Saturday, March 3, 2012

Flight 93 National Memorial: Do You Remember?

I was traveling on Interstate 40 eastbound through New Mexico on September 11, 2001.  Given the time difference from the East Coast, I got the news on the car radio starting a little after 7:30 a.m.  about the hijacked airplanes.  Hell, who can forget where they were?  I've visited the memorial at the Pentagon , and I've been very close to the site of the Twin Towers in New York, given the massive construction projects going on there.  For those who may never get to come to this place on the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania, I hope these pictures will give you a sense of what it feels like at this stark, lonely memorial to a tragic event that changed the world:  9/11
(click on the photos to enlarge them)

A sign in the parking lot directing visitors to the site.
The walk from the parking lot to the Memorial Plaza is about 300 yards.  

The white marble panels bear the names of the 40 passengers on board Flight 93 and are aligned with the flight path.  In this picture the plane would have entered from the right hand side and crashed about 100 yeards out of this frame on the left.  

The sidewalk and lights represent the flight path.  This photo looks off into the direction from which the plane came.
Although the Crash Site can be viewed from a distance, only the family of Flight 93 victims (and VIPs) are allowed unrestricted access.  I suspect this restriction will be in place for a generation or two. 

More views of the panels and Memorial Plaza


In this picture you will see a boulder representing the point of impact of Flight 93.  To the right is the Memorial Plaza panels.  If you look close you can see small United States flags blowing in the cold wind.  

Walking back toward the Memorial Plaza entrance where a National Park Ranger stands on duty answering questions from visitors.  The parking lot is on the other side. 

Interpretive panels facing the direction of the descending Flight 93 and the passengers and crew (below).


This Flight 93 National Memorial book was in the interpretive center and I photographed entries from today.  After taking this picture I signed the book myself:  "Never Forgotten" 


A passport stamp was available and I stamped this piece of paper as a small memento of my visit. 


3 comments:

  1. Great tour of this solemn place Pat. I toured the Pentagon memorial and have been to Ground Zero a few times...It always tugs at my heart, and reminds me that the wounds are still very real...

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was taken in by how "big" the sky looks at this crash site. Standing on the ground one could have seen this plane coming in for miles and miles. Additionally, before being developed by the National Park Service, this was a pretty remote field. One gets perspective when you see it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. This Memorial to Flight 93 was touching to see, Pat! I lived in NYC on 9-11 and now I live in the same community in Littleton, CO that the pilot of Flight,93 lived in when he died. There is a memorial to him here that I blogged about ( under the label 9-11 on my blog's sidebar)

    ReplyDelete