AVALON — Around the country Tuesday people stopped to remember the victims, the nearly 3,000 men and women killed during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
People such as Nancy Marquis stopped to remember friends.
Marquis, a Stone Harbor summer resident from Glen, N.H., was once a flight attendant with United Airlines and she knew the crew aboard United Flight 93, the plane that crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pa.
“They were my friends for many years. There was my friend, Wanda Green, she was a wonderful woman,” Marquis said as she recalled Green, a flight attendant on that fateful flight.
“I hate to think of it. What happened to them is horrifying. At least they went down fighting, how brave they were,” Marquis said.
Marquis was among hundreds who gathered at Avalon’s September 11 Memorial Plaza, a permanent fixture on Dune Drive that is home to a 1,800-pound piece of metal from the World Trade Center site.
During Tuesday’s ceremony, the memorial was formally dedicated.
“I think it’s wonderful that portions of the buildings have been distributed across the country, so now so many people, not just in New York or Washington, feel invested in it,” said Marquis, who lived in New York in 2001.
Avalon Mayor Martin Pagliughi said the borough and its residents spent more than a year working to secure the metal that would become the focal point of this and future remembrances.
“I think it’s very important to remember,” the mayor said as dozens filed past the scorched steel, some taking pictures with the twisted metal.
The monument, erected by Public Works employees and members of the carpenters union, stands 9 feet 11 inches tall and is placed at an angle of 9 degrees 11 minutes facing Manhattan.
Bronze inlays around the steel highlight the crucial times that day: 8:46 a.m., the moment Flight 11 crashed into the North tower; 9:03 a.m., the moment United Airlines Flight 175 crashed into the South Tower; 9:37 a.m., the time American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon; 9:59 a.m., the moment the South Tower collapsed, 10:03 a.m., the moment Flight 93 crashed in Shanksville; and 10: 28 a.m., the moment the North Tower collapsed.
As Tuesday’s ceremony concluded, bagpiper Larry Kenney, of Cape May Court House, played “Amazing Grace” followed by the Seven Mile Singers' rendition of “God Bless America.”
The crowd listened closely, applauding and smiling at the close, perhaps a nod to the words that line the wall around the monument: “All that is good will endure …”
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