On Sunday, September 11, 2011, the 9/11 Memorial was opened to family members who lost loved ones on September 11th. A public opening is planned for 9/12/11. The memorial features two reflecting pools bordered by walls carved with the names of those who lost their lives when the twin towers were attacked. Almost 3,000 lives were lost at the memorial site. The pools are set into the two tower’s footprints.
Family members placed flowers by loved one’s names, or placed paper on a name and rubbed charcoal or crayons allowing them to take home a copy of the engraving. President Obama and former president Bush read passages at the memorial.
(Check out slideshow on left)
While the Towers may be gone, even ten years later, the memory and emotional scarring that the attacks stirred are still alive and well in many who attended. Perhaps what brought the reality and immensity of the attacks was the reading of the 2,753 names, which took almost 5 hours. Because the bodies of almost half of those killed have never been recovered or identified, the memorial is the final resting place for many loved ones.
While family members grieved inside the memorial site, tens of thousands more gathered in the surrounding areas to remember the event and show support. Visitors included many firefighters from around the world, including Canada and Italy. Mike Emslie from Canada came to visit and reflect. Mr. Emslie has served two tours in Afghanistan. “I’m here today to see what I fought for,” he said. Also present at the memorial service was firefighter, Captain Paride Maccarinelli of Brescia, Italy, who has attended numerous remembrances in the past. “I’m here to show my support,” said the Captain.
The crowd was somber and quiet. As the names were read, some were overcome with emotion and simply sat down on the curb or street, putting their heads down in grief.
Domenick Pilla is also the National Cultural Issues Examiner
©2011 Domenick Pilla
To receive an e-mail notification whenever a new article by Domenick Pilla is published, click the SUBSCRIBE button located near the top of this page.
Note regarding copyright: If you wish to place this article on your website, you may include a short excerpt (no more than a paragraph or two) with a link back to the original. Copying the article in its entirety or using the photos without permission is not permitted. Questions or comments can be sent to [email protected]