It has been 18 years. As we looked back on 9/11 our thoughts go to those we lost, the fireman who fought so bravely, the volunteers who gave so generously and all those affected by that horrible day.
Thousands of 9/11 victims’ relatives, survivors, rescuers and politicians will gather at the memorial plaza where the World Trade Center’s twin towers once stood. 2,996 people died on 9/11. We especially remember the firemen at (FDNY) Engine 54, Ladder 4, Battalion 9 and the 15 men — everyone working that shift, who raced to the World Trade Center, never returned.
Firefighters, police and others who died or fell ill after exposure to the wreckage and the toxins unleashed in it have been given a victims compensation fund. More than $5.5 billion so far with over 51,000 people who have applied. Due to legislative gridlock, dwindling money, fervent activism by ailing first responders and their advocates, Congress this summer made sure the fund won’t run dry. President Trump, signed the measure into effect this July. The sick have gained new recognition this year at the memorial plaza at ground zero, where the new 9/11 Memorial Glade was dedicated this spring. The tribute features six large stacks of granite inlaid with salvaged trade center steel, with a dedication “to those whose actions led to their injury, sickness, and death.” No one is named specifically.
The Tribute in Light is a commemorative public art installation was first presented six months after 9/11 and then every year thereafter, from dusk to dawn, on the night of September 11. It has become an iconic symbol that both honors those killed and celebrates the unbreakable spirit of New York. The twin beams reach up to four miles into the sky and are comprised of 88 7,000-watt xenon light bulbs positioned into two 48-foot squares, echoing the shape and orientation of the Twin Towers.
Hundreds of people, including families of victims, survivors, first responders and political leaders, gathered today at 8:46 a.m. for the 18th annual commemoration ceremony at the 9/11 Memorial at the World Trade Center. It will include moments of silence.
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum broadcasted the ceremony live on its website. Houses of worship were asked to toll their bells during the first moment of silence at 8:46 a.m.
The names of the men, women and children that were killed are read aloud. We will not forget them.
Flags will be lowered to half-staff on the 9/11 anniversary at 8:46 a.m. to mark the moment when Flight 11 struck the North Tower at the WTC and an honor guard made up of members representing the FDNY, NYPD and the Port Authority Police will stand by.
The 9/11 Memorial Museum will be open exclusively to 9/11 community members from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., with the last entry being 6 p.m. Normal operations will resume on Sept. 12.
The Memorial Plaza is open to the public from 3 p.m. to midnight for the viewing of Tribute in Light. The installation can also be viewed from a 60-mile radius around lower Manhattan.