All of us will never forget that day. We will forever remember where we were and what we were doing when we heard the news of the tragedies. If you were like me, your first reaction was concern for your family; you immediately wanted to know where your family members were and that they were safe. Nothing like this had ever happened before so we were uncertain of what else might happen. We were looking for safety.
Luckily, for the vast majority of us, we weren't in harms way and our lives are back to near normal. Now the time has come that we should find a way to remember those who died at the Pentagon; in Pennsylvania: and in New York City in a right and honorable way. For those involved in the events at New York City's World Trade Center, the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation is leading the following effort.
"In 2002, the LMDC Families Advisory Council created and revised a preliminary memorial mission statement and program. Following public comment on this preliminary document, which included a mailing to the family members of the victims and public hearings held throughout New York and New Jersey, the LMDC convened memorial mission statement and program drafting committees. The drafting committees were comprised of family members of victims, residents, survivors, first responders, arts and architecture professionals, community leaders, and representatives from the LMDC advisory councils. Using the Families Advisory Council's preliminary drafts and the public comments as a starting point, the drafting committees prepared the revised drafts of a memorial mission statement and a memorial program." From http://www.renewnyc.com
A mission statement has been drafted that outlines goals of the memorial.
MEMORIAL MISSION STATEMENT FOR THE WORLD TRADE CENTER SITE
||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 REMEMBERED, THE DEEDS RECOGNIZED, AND THE SPIRIT REAWAKENED BE ETERNAL BEACONS, WHICH REAFFIRM RESPECT FOR LIFE, STRENGTHEN OUR RESOLVE TO PRESERVE FREEDOM, AND INSPIRE AN END TO HATRED, IGNORANCE AND INTOLERANCE.
The mission statement says remember and honor the fallen, respect the place, and recognize the survivors. A quality goal and one that we support. Satisfying all parts of this goal will be difficult however and will require compromises by all interested parties.
On Wednesday, 9/10/03, Lower Manhattan Development Corporation President Kevin M. Rampe, made the following statement regarding the footprints of the World Trade Center:
"Two years ago, just steps from where we stand, the worst kind of evil was visited on our city. On September 11th, more than 3,000 innocent lives were lost--our lives, our way of life, was changed forever.
But out of the devastation arose a spirit of unity and heroism the world had never before witnessed. Thousands of people from every walk of life and every ideological stripe set aside their differences to stand united in the face of unspeakable terror.
Many thought that once the recovery ended, and the last embers faded, so too would that spirit of unity. It did not. It has not. And it never will.
Today, a group of family members expressed concern about the future of the area known as the footprints, where the towers once stood. First of all, I would like to extend my sympathies to them and all the families on what is an extremely painful time of year. I also want to express my admiration and appreciation for all the courage and strength they have shown throughout this process. For whatever its flaws, that process will lead to an even better result because of the contribution they have made.
In response to some misperceptions that have circulated, today I want to make one thing very, very clear:
We will never, ever build commercial or retail space where those towers once soared to the heavens.
We will build a memorial that will make our entire nation proud."
The creation of this memorial is important to not only New York, but to the entire world. I know it is important to me because my wife and I were in New York City that day attending a business meeting. A day in our lives we will never forget. When the memorial is complete, I plan to take a trip to New York again to visit the memorial. Only then will I have done my part to complete the mission of the memorial.