Memorials and services for the September 11 attacks

Memorials and services for the September 11 attacks
The 2004 Tribute in Light memorial.

The first memorials to the victims of the September 11, 2001, attacks began to take shape online, as hundreds of webmasters posted their own thoughts, links to the Red Cross, and other rescue agencies, photos and eyewitness accounts. Numerous online September 11 memorials began appearing a few hours after the attacks, although many of these memorials were only temporary.[1]

Around the world, U.S. embassies and consulates became makeshift memorials as people came out to pay their respects. Many U.S. ambassadors have said that they will never forget the outpouring of people as they showed their sympathy to the American people and their opposition to terrorism.

The Tribute in Light was the first major physical memorial at the World Trade Center site. A permanent memorial and museum, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum at the World Trade Center site are planned, as part of the design by overall WTC site redevelopment. The Memorial will consist of two massive pools set within the original footprints of the Twin Towers with 30-foot (9.1 m) waterfalls cascading down their sides. The names of the victims of the attacks will be inscribed around the edges of the waterfalls.

Permanent memorials are being constructed around the world, and a list of them is being updated as new ones are completed. 911 Memorials is a site that features the newest as they are added and provides a directory of each by community, state, and country in the column on the right of the site page.[2]

One of the places that saw many memorials and candlelight vigils was Pier A in Hoboken, New Jersey, where many people saw the events of September 11 (Pier A had a good view of the World Trade Center.) There was also a memorial service on March 11, 2002, at dusk on Pier A when the Tribute in Light first turned on, marking the half-year anniversary of the terrorist attack. A permanent September 11 memorial for Hoboken, called Hoboken Island, was chosen in September 2004.

George Clooney arranged a televised benefit concert called America: A Tribute to Heroes, which aired ten days after the attacks.


Physical memorials

Bronze wall mural dedicated to the fallen firefighters, South of the WTC site
Pentagon Memorial at night, with the United States Air Force Memorial in the background
The Arizona memorial to the events of September 11, 2001
Twin Towers Memorial in Israel
A series of hand-painted tiles, dedicated to the victims of the September 11 attacks, on the fence of a car-lot in New York City.
The Flight 93 temporary memorial in Pennsylvania
View of a Memorial from Jersey City, New Jersey - USA, that faces the former location of the Twin Towers, photo taken in July 2007
Memorial at Liberty Plaza in Union City, New Jersey, which lost four citizens in the attacks
Memorial at Arlington National Cemetery for victims of the September 11th, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon.
September 11 Memorial at the Texas State Cemetery with two girders removed from the WTC wreckage
Steel from the World Trade Center is poured for construction of USS New York (LPD-21)
Steel recovered from the World Trade Center displayed on USS New York (LPD-21).

The FDNY memorial wall is a 56-foot-long (17 m) bronze wall of cast bas-relief bronze which honors the 343 firefighters who gave their lives in service to the public during the attacks. Commissioned by FDNY and unveiled in 2006 as a memorial to the fallen firefighters, it lists all of the fallen firefighters names, and is installed in the west wall of Engine Company 10 – Ladder Company 10 on Greenwich Street between Albany Street and Liberty Street, just across from Ground Zero.[3][4][5]

On October 4, Reverend Brian Jordan, a Franciscan priest, blessed the World Trade Center cross, two broken beams at the crash site which had formed a cross, and then had been welded together by iron-workers.

On October 13, the North Charleston Coliseum raised a special banner featuring the retired number of Mark Bavis, who was on United Airlines Flight 175. Bavis had played for the ECHL's South Carolina Stingrays, and his retired number hangs in a special corner, independently from the Stingrays' retired numbers (#14, #24) and awards banners (1997 and 2001 Kelly Cup Championships), with the years he played for the team (1994–96), the date of his death (September 11, 2001), and an American flag.

On March 11, 2002, the damaged Sphere sculpture formerly in the World Trade Center was dedicated by the city as a temporary memorial in Battery Park City.[6]

The Tribute in Light project consists of 88 searchlights placed next to the site of the World Trade Center created two vertical columns of light. The tribute began in 2001, and is now made every year on September 11.[7][8][9]

Also in New York City, a commuter bus that was heavily damaged in the collapse of the World Trade Center was repainted with a special American flag scheme on its sides and rear (as shown to the right).[10]

On September 11, 2002, representatives from over 90 countries came to Battery Park City as New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg lit an eternal flame to mark the first anniversary of the attacks. Leading the dignitaries were Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien, U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, Bloomberg, and Secretary of State Colin Powell. The same day, the Victims of Terrorist Attack on the Pentagon Memorial was dedicated at Arlington National Cemetery near the Pentagon. The memorial is dedicated to the five individuals at the Pentagon whose remains were never found, and the partial remains of another 25 victims are buried beneath the memorial.[11] The names of the 184 victims of the Pentagon attack are inscribed on the memorial's side.

Colts Neck, New Jersey, which lost five members of their community,[12] commissioned sculptor Jim Gary, a lifetime resident, to create a memorial garden featuring his central sculpture of brass, copper, and stained glass—where each victim is represented by a colorful butterfly among plants in a water garden. The contemplative garden was dedicated at the municipal center of Colts Neck on November 10, 2002.[13][14]

On September 11, 2006 at 9:15am, Russian artist Zurab Tsereteli dedicated his sculpture, "To the Struggle Against World Terrorism" (also commonly known as "Tear of Grief", a 10-story high tribute erected on the Jersey City waterfront across the Hudson River from where the World Trade Center towers fell. The sculpture is an official gift of the Russian government to commemorate the victims of the attacks. That evening, the Empire State Building went dark for 11 minutes at 9:11 p.m. in remembrance.[15][16]

The Pentagon Memorial was opened on September 11, 2008, the seventh anniversary of the attacks.[17] It is a 1.93-acre (7,800 m2) park, with 184 benches, in memory of the 184 victims at The Pentagon and on American Airlines Flight 77, arranged according to the victims' ages, ranging from 3 to 71. Construction on the Pentagon Memorial began on June 15, 2006. An additional memorial inside the Pentagon, along with a chapel, was constructed at the site of the attack when the building was rebuilt in 2002.[18][19]

On September 11, 2009, the Defense Intelligence Agency dedicated a permanent memorial to the seven DIA officers who died on 9/11 while working at the Pentagon. The memorial is part of the Defense Intelligence Analysis Center on Bolling Air Force Base in Washington, DC, the largest of DIA's facilities.[20]

Near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, a permanent Flight 93 National Memorial is in planning stages, which will include a sculpted grove of trees forming a circle around the crash site, bisected by the plane's path, while wind chimes will bear the names of the victims.[21] A temporary memorial is located 500 yards (457 m) from the Flight 93 crash site near Shanksville.[22]

New York City firefighters donated a memorial to the Shanksville Volunteer Fire Department. It is a cross made of steel from the World Trade Center and mounted atop a platform shaped like the Pentagon.[23] It was installed outside the firehouse on August 25, 2008.[24]

The US Navy named three ships, New York,[25] Arlington[26] and Somerset,[27] in commemoration of the places the planes used in the attack came down: New York State, Arlington, Virginia, and Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

The Texas State Cemetery has a memorial to the September 11 victims. It is composed to symbolize the damaged Twin Towers, made with two twisted iron girders that had been part of the WTC and salvaged from the Ground Zero wreckage.[28][29]

The city of Coral Springs, Florida has its own memorial dedicated to the victims of the attacks. It is located outside the Northwest Regional Library, the city's only public library.[30]

The Garden of Reflection 9-11 Memorial is located in Memorial Park in Lower Makefield Township, Pennsylvania. Designed by Yardley architect Liuba Lashchyk, it is intended to symbolize light that follows darkness.[31]

The New Britain Museum of American Art commissioned painter Graydon Parrish to create the allegorical painting "The Cycle of Terror and Tragedy" in memory of New Britain native Scott O'Brien, who was killed in the attacks.[32]

The LeRoy W. Homer Jr. Foundation, established in memory of United 93 First Officer LeRoy Homer by his widow Melodie Homer. The Foundation awards up to three scholarships annually from applicants ages 16 – 23 residing within the United States as citizens or resident aliens. The scholarship program is funded through private donations, corporate contributions and grant requests. The Foundation also promotes awareness of aviation as a career choice, with a focus on providing information to women and minorities who are underrepresented in the US pilot population.[33]

On November 12, 2009, a monument was dedicated in Israel, in Jerusalem's Arazim Park. Designed by Israeli artist Eliezer Weishoff, the 30-foot high bronze sculpture is composed of a waving American flag transformed into a memorial flame, which rests upon a base of gray granite, part of which is from the original Twin Towers. The sculpture is surrounded by a circular, crater-like plaza and reflection area tiled in stone. As of November 2009, it is the only monument outside of New York which lists the names of all of the victims. U.S. Ambassador to Israel James Cunningham and U.S. Congressman Erik Paulsen led a U.S. delegation attending the ceremony dedicating the monument. They were joined by Israeli Cabinet ministers, Knesset members, families of the victims.[34][35]

On September 11, 2006, "The Rising" was dedicated in Westchester County, NY in memory of the residents of that county called during the 9-11 attacks.[36]

On September 11, 2011, "Empty Sky", the official New Jersey memorial to 9/11 victims, was dedicated in Liberty State Park, New Jersey,[37]

In Union City, New Jersey, which lost four of its residents during the attacks, the first 9/11 memorial was a sculpture placed in Doric Park, in whose courtyard citizens gathered on September 11, 2001 to view the attacks' aftereffects.[38] On September 11, 2007, the city dedicated its Liberty Plaza to commemorate the event. The Plaza, which serves as a transit hub through which commuters pass on their way to and from Manhattan, includes two memorial markers.[39][40] In subsequent years, citizens of neighboring towns have been honored at Liberty Plaza, including North Bergen resident David Lemagne, a Port Authority police officer who grew up in Union City, and perished during the attacks.[41] Doric Park was later rebuilt as Firefighters Memorial Park, which opened in August 2009. A new memorial to local firefighters who gave their lives in the line of duty now stands in the entrance to the park's entrance,[42] whose popularity has attracted visitors from Manhattan and Staten Island.[43]

Clyde, NC WTC monument

In September 2011, the Firefighters from Clyde, NC unveiled a monument dedicated to the victims of the attacks. It is composed of sections of steel from the World Trade Center, with fencework designed to look like the lobbies in 1 and 2 WTC. It is located in front of the Clyde, NC fire department.

Performances and benefits

2001 events

On Thursday, September 20, the New York Philharmonic performed a memorial concert of Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem in Avery Fisher Hall. The concert was led off by the national anthem, and on the stage was a flag which appeared on stage during all Philharmonic World War II concerts. All proceeds went to disaster relief. At the request of the Philharmonic director, all applause was held, and the audience filed out in silence.

On Friday, September 21, America: A Tribute to Heroes

A two-hour live telethon entitled America: A Tribute to Heroes, with musical performances and spoken tributes by top American performers, was simultaneously broadcast on nearly every single network. Celebrities such as Al Pacino, George Clooney and Jack Nicholson manned the phones.

On Tuesday, October 2, beginning at 8 p.m. EDT: Come Together: A Night for John Lennon's Words and Music

A tribute to John Lennon that became a concert of prayer and healing for New York City to benefit the relief efforts, hosted by Kevin Spacey and featuring Dave Matthews, Moby, Stone Temple Pilots, Nelly Furtado, Shelby Lynne, Alanis Morissette, Cyndi Lauper, The Isley Brothers, Lou Reed, Marc Anthony, Natalie Merchant, Yolanda Adams, Sean Lennon and Yoko Ono, was held at Radio City Music Hall and simultaneously broadcast live on the TNT and WB networks. It had been scheduled before the attack to be taped September 20 and broadcast on October 9 to promote a non-violent world.

On Thursday, October 4, at 9 p.m. EDT: ART Benefit for Sept. 11 Fund[citation needed]

Silent auction of photography, mixed media, painting and sculpture to benefit the victims, at View Bar, 232 Eighth Avenue.

On Saturday, October 6, at 6 p.m. EDT: And the Sun Went Down

Luvchild Theatre Ensemble performs a work in progress based on stories of people directly affected by the events of Sept. 11. All proceeds benefit victims and families, at New York Comedy Club, 241 East 24th St.[citation needed]

On Sunday, October 7: AMF National Bowl-a-thon

National effort to raise $3 million for the Twin Towers Fund. In New York City at 3 p.m.: Chelsea Piers.[44]

On Monday, October 8: New York City Columbus Day Parade

The annual Columbus Day parade is dedicated to victims and rescue and relief workers. The NYPD and FDNY did not march in the parade as they usually do, but they sent a single fire truck instead, in somber memory.[citation needed]

At 3 p.m. EDT:

Free Brooklyn Philharmonic concert conducted by Robert Spano at the Brooklyn Academy of Music with music from American composers, including George Gershwin, Leonard Bernstein, and Aaron Copland. The concert is rebroadcast on WNYC at 8 p.m.

On Monday, October 8 and October 15, from 11-8: Haircut for Life

Roberto Novo and his stylists cut hair to benefit WTC victims at the Roberto Novo Salon, 192 Eighth Avenue.

On Tuesday, October 9: Benefit for WTC Disaster Fund: Celebration of John Lennon's Birthday

The East Village Antifolk scene play John Lennon's and their own songs to raise money. Performances from The Voyces, Joie DBG, Amos, Bionic Finger, Laura Fay, Barry Bliss, Tony Hightower, Linda Draper, Pat Cisarano, Lach, Testosterone Kills, Kenny Davidsen, Jude Kastle, Bree Sharp, Erica Smith, Fenton Lawless, Grey Revell, at the Sidewalk Cafe, 94 Ave. A.

On October 17, Marvel Comics and other members of the comic industry release a tribute book, primarily with drawings of firefighters and police officers, with proceeds going to the victims. Other charity books are also in production.[citation needed]

On October 20, The Concert for New York City

On October 20, 21 Volunteers For America was a benefit concert held on October 20, in Atlanta Georgia and October 21 at the Smirnoff Music Center Dallas Texas The concerts were held in tribute to the victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks. Styx band members, Tommy Shaw, James Young along with others put the benefit concert together in a short period of time. The Concert was in Atlanta Georgia October 20 and moved over night to Dallas, Texas for the October 21 show. Proceeds from the concerts went to Families of Fireman killed in the 9-11 Terror attacks.

On October 21, United We Stand: What More Can I Give

2002 and later events

On February 3, 2002, during the Halftime Show of Super Bowl XXXVI, rock group U2 performed Where the Streets Have No Name, while the names of the victims were projected onto banners. Bono opened his jacket to reveal a U.S. flag pattern sewn in the inside lining.

On February 23, 2003, the 45th Annual Grammy Awards were held at Madison Square Garden and paid tribute to those who died during the 9/11 attacks, to whom the ceremony was dedicated. Ceremony host Bruce Springsteen performed "The Rising" at the Awards.

10th anniversary memorial services

Many organizations held memorial services and events for the 10th anniversary of the attacks.

  • The official New York City observance of the 10th anniversary of September 11 took place at the World Trade Center site at 8:40am – 12:30pm Sunday, September 11th, 2011. Zuccotti Park, Liberty Street between Broadway and Church Streets. Four moments of silence were observed to commemorate the times when each plane hit and each tower fell, starting at 8:46 a.m.
  • At sunset, the "Tribute in Light" dual search light lit the skies above New York City for the night of 9/11/11.
  • Liquid Church[45] held Memorial worship services in three cities in New Jersey: Montclair, Morristown, and New Brunswick on 9/11/11 at 9:30am and 11:30am in each city. The church also commissioned and recorded a tribute song written by Dave Pettigrew & Frank Di Minno called, "There is Hope."
  • In Radcliff Kentucky at the Kentucky Veteran's Cemetery Central, a committee of local citizens worked on a memorial effort taking only 8 weeks from the time of receipt of a piece of steel from the World Trade Center to the Tenth Anniversay remembrance ceremony. In that time they developed a concept design, found companies willing to donate time, labor, technical expertise, and material, and began a fund raising effort which allowed a memorial to be erected solely on private funding. This memorial completed phase I in these 8 weeks and now enters phase II. Hundreds of citizens assembled during the remembrance ceremony held for the Tenth Anniversay on Sunday, September 11th.
  • On September 10, 2011 at the ALMA Awards, without acknowledging any connection to the WTC or the tenth anniversary, Demi Lovato did a live performance of her 2011 song Skyscraper. The English lyrics to the song include:
Skies are crying...
Only silence as it’s ending, like we never had a chance
Do you have to make me feel like there’s nothing left of me...
As the smoke clears I awaken and untangle you from me
Would it make you feel better to watch me while I bleed
All my windows still are broken but I’m standing on feet
You can take everything I have, you can break everything I am
Go on and try to tear me down, I will be rising from the ground
Like a skyscraper[46][47]

Memorial efforts

Many families and friends of victims have set up memorial funds and projects to give back to their communities and change the world in honor of their loved ones' lives. Examples include:

  • Beyond the 11th
  • The Peter M. Goodrich Memorial Foundation
  • Our Voices Together
  • September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows
  • Heroic Choices (originally the Todd M. Beamer Foundation)
  • Tuesday's Children
  • 9-11 Garden of Reflection (
  • LeRoy Homer Foundation (

The Raoul Wallenberg Award was given to New York City in 2001 "For all of its citizens who searched for the missing, cared for the injured, gave comfort to loved ones of the missing or lost, and provided sustenance and encouragement to those who searched through the rubble at Ground Zero."

Newark International Airport was renamed "Newark Liberty International Airport".[48][49]

Memorial flags

The National 9/11 Flag was made from a tattered remains of a 30-foot (9.1 m) American flag found by recovery workers in the early morning of September 12, 2001. It was hanging precariously from some scaffolding at a construction site next to Ground Zero. Because of safety reasons the flag could not be taken down until late October 2001. Charlie Vitchers, a construction superintendent for the Ground Zero cleanup effort, had a crew recover the flag. It was placed in storage for seven years.[50]

On the 9/11 Anniversary 2008 Charlie and his team from the New York Says Thank You Foundation brought the flag with them on their work trip to Greensberg, Kansas. Greensberg had recently been almost nearly destroyed by a tornado. As the hundreds of New York Says Thank You Foundation volunteers rebuilt the town, 58 residents repaired the flag using local flags that had survived the tornado.[50]

The flag has made a number appearances across the country including a Boston Red Sox Game, a New York Giants Home Opener, and the USS New York Commissioning Ceremony. It also appeared on the CBS Evening News and on ABC World News Tonight "Persons of the Week."[51]

The flag began a national tour on Flag day, June 14, 2009. It will visit all 50 states where service heroes, veterans, and other honorees will each add stitching and material from other retired American flags in order to restore the original 13 stripes of the flag. The flag will have a permanent home at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.[52]

Soon after the September 11 attacks, designed the September 11 Commemorative Flag so that a patriotic product like this would be easily available in that time of crisis. The design of the flag is based on the standard American flag, except that a silhouette of New York City featuring the twin towers and the date of the attacks is added on top of the blue square of stars. The depiction of New York city and the twin towers represents all those that died in the attacks and is a reminder of how New York city was before the attack. Sometimes the flag also features the words "We Will Never Forget" in blue on the bottom white stripe to represent the country's promise to remember the people who were lost in the attacks, as well as the sacrifices made by the men and women of the country in defending our freedom.

The 9-11 Remembrance Flag was created to be a permanent reminder of the thousands of people lost in the September 11 attacks. The purpose of keeping the memories of September 11 alive is not to be forever mourning, but for "learning from the circumstances and making every effort to prevent similar tragedies in our future." The flag is also meant to be a reminder of how the people of this country came together to help each other after the attacks. The red background of the flag represents the blood shed by Americans for their country. The stars represent the lost airplanes and their passengers. The blue rectangles stand for the twin towers and the white pentagon represents the Pentagon building. The blue circle symbolizes the unity of this country after the attacks.

The 9/11 National Remembrance Flag was designed by Stephan and Joanne Galvin soon after September 11, 2001. They wanted to do something to help and were inspired by a neighbor's POW/MIA flag. They wanted sell the flag so people would remember the September 11 attacks and in order to raise money for relief efforts. The blue represents the colors of the state flags that were involved in the attacks. The black represents sorrow for innocent lives lost. The four stars stand for the four planes that crashed and the lives lost, both in the crash and in the rescue efforts, as well as the survivors. The blue star is a representation of American Airlines Flight 77 and the Pentagon. The two white stars represent American Airlines flight 11 and United Airlines flight 175, as well as the twin towers. The red star stands for United Flight 93 that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania and all those who sacrifice their lives to protect the innocent. The colors of the stars represent the American flag. The four stars are touching each other and the blue parts of the flag in order to symbolize the unity of the people of the United States.

The National Flag of Honor and the National Flag of Heroes were created by John Michelotti for three main reasons: (1)"To immortalize the individual victims that were killed in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001." (2)"To give comfort to the families left behind knowing that their loved one will be forever honored and remembered." (2)"To create an enduring symbol, recognized by the world, of the human sacrifice that occurred on September 11, 2001."

The Flag of Honor and the Flag of Heroes are based on the American flag. They both have the names of all the innocent people who were killed in the September 11 attacks printed on the red and white stripes of the American Flag. Both flags have a white space across the bottom with the name of the flag and a description printed in black. The Flag of Honor reads: "This flag contains the names of those killed in the terrorist attacks of September 11. Now and forever it will represent their immortality. We shall never forget them" The Flag of Heroes reads: " This flag contains the names of the emergency service personnel who gave their lives to save others in the terrorist attacks of September 11. Now and forever it will represent their immortality. We shall never forget them."

The Flag of Honor and the Flag of Heroes were featured at the NYC 9/11 Memorial Field 5th Anniversary in Manhattan's Inwood Hill Park September 8–12, 2006. There 3,000 flags which represented those who died in the September 11 attacks.[53] The flags were also featured on the msnbc Today Show[54] and on ABC 13 News, Norfolk, VA.[55]

The Remembrance Flag has a white background with large, black Roman numerals IX/XI in the center and four black stars across the top. The IX/XI are the Roman numerals for 9/11. The four stars represent World Trade Center North, World Trade Center South, the Pentagon, and Shanksville, PA.

Virtual memorials

The growing popularity of virtual worlds such as Secondlife has led to the construction of permanent virtual memorials and exhibits. Examples include:

  • Celestial Requiem NYC (SecondLife) [56] is a virtual recreation of a submitted physical memorial proposal:

    On September 11, 2007, a virtual reality World Trade Center Memorial will be presented to the people of the world. The location is in Second Life, on the island we have named after the original design: Celestial Requiem NYC. We have built this memorial because, to be blunt, the world needed it done years ago, and the two years longer to await the completion of the "Reflected Absence" memorial in New York city (by Michael Arad and Peter Walker) was in our opinion two years too long.[57]

  • World Trade Center Memorial (SecondLife) [58] is focused on the victims of 9/11, reminiscent of the Memorial Wall of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.

Picture gallery

See also

Portal icon September 11 attacks portal
Portal icon Social movements portal


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External links

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