Monday, March 11 marked the six-month anniversary of the attack on the World Trade Center and was observed with prayers and reflection, the dedication of a scarred memorial, and a tribute of twin beams of light.
Hundreds of mourners at the site paused for two moments of silence marking the precise times when two airliners hit the towers and killed more than 2,800 people. They were joined in the two-minute observance by so many more across America.
City officials dedicated a sculpture damaged in the attack as a temporary memorial in Battery Park. "The Sphere" is a 5,000-pound steel-and-bronze sculpture created in 1971 by artist Fritz Koenig. It was originally dedicated as a monument to world peace through world trade and stood in the fountain of the Trade Center Plaza. "It survived the collapse of the Twin Towers, as has the idea that catalyzed its creation: a peaceful world based on trade and the free movement of people and ideas," Mayor Bloomberg said. "This is just a temporary memorial; the real memorial will be in our hearts."
As soon as it was dark, twin pillars of light from two light banks, each with 44 lamps mounted in a lot near Ground Zero were illuminated. A 12-year-old girl, orphaned in the attacks, flicked on the lights. Across the city and nearby, people looked up into the night sky and saw two thin columns of translucent bluish light soaring into the sky over lower Manhattan, symbolically recreating the World Trade Center and memorializing those lost there. This display created by two arts organizations, will be displayed until April 13. Con Edison is donating the electricity.
My district was greatly affected by the traffic events that occurred on Sept. 11. We lost many people in the towers. This tragedy has affected all of us and we will never forger it.
It seems as though life is beginning to return to normal. People are beginning to fly again, go to the movies - move on. I think the American public is much more determined since this tragedy. We will no longer sit by and observe if our safety or security is in jeopardy.
Last week, the Assembly passed a resolution for "9/11 Remembrance Day" to memorialize the casualties of the World Trade Center attack and to honor the heroes who came to their rescue. I am a sponsor on this bill.
The world we live in has changed significantly. On Sept. 11, approximately 3,071 people are believed to have died. It is important to remember those lives lost, in the towers, in the airplanes and in the Pentagon, as well.