Sunday, October 7, 2012

9/11 Memorial

I’ve thought about how I was going to share this post with you all for a long time, and kept writing and deleting my thoughts and ideas for it. I certainly was not fully prepared for how emotional of an experience it was, being in the presence of the memorial. I’m not even sure if my words or pictures will be able to explain the power and grandeur of the moment, and I know it is one I will never forget.

This is the Mission Statement of The Memorial:

“Remember and honor the thousands of innocent men, women, and children murdered by terrorists in the horrific attacks of February 26, 1993 and September 11, 2001.
Respect this place made sacred through tragic loss.
Recognize the endurance of those who survived, the courage of those who risked their lives to save others, and the compassion of all who supported us in our darkest hours.
May the lives remembers, the deeds recognized, and the spirit reawakened be eternal beacons, which reaffirm respect for life, strengthen our resolve to preserve freedom, and inspire and end to hatred, ignorance, and intolerance. “

To view The Memorial you need to make an online reservation. There are certain times you are allowed entry, however you are free to stay as long as you like. Erika and I went at 11:30 am on Tuesday August 21st.

The 9/11 Memorial opened on the 10th anniversary of the attacks. There are now two pools that rest in the exact spot the original Twin Towers stood. The names of the victims are inscribed in bronze around the perimeter of the pools. The North Pool has inscriptions of victims from World Trade Center North, February 26, 1993 and Flight 11. The South Pool has the names of victims from World Trade Center South, First Responders, Flight 93, Flight 97, the Pentagon, and Flight 175.

Construction of the new World Trade Center is still going on. You can visit for more information.

On a final note, it is my wish that The Memorial's mission of respect is reinforced on a daily basis. I hope that its visitors respect this sacred spot. Unfortunately during my visit it was very apparent that there were some visitors showing a lack of respect. I couldn't quite fully understand smiling and posing for a picture in front of the names of the victims and heroes, or resting a small child on top of a name. Though I know these things are not done with malice, it would be reassuring knowing that all visitors are well informed and honor this site. 

Freedom Tower and entrance to The Memorial

 Survivor Tree

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