Tuesday, September 11 marks the 17th anniversary of the landmark terror attack on the United States. The National September 11 Memorial and Museum will observe the day with a ceremony at ground zero to remember the 2,983 people killed in the attacks at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and aboard Flight 93 which went down in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
A heavy stillness descended over the 9/11 Memorial as thousands gathered Tuesday in lower Manhattan to remember those killed in the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
The procession began with the American flag carried into Ground Zero by police and fire members in dress uniforms just before 8:45 a.m. and the singing of the national anthem.
Under a heavy gray sky that only thickened the sad mood, families of those who died raised photos and signs high as a bell rang out at 8:46 a.m. to memorialize the moment when the first terrorist-hyjacked plane struck the north tower of the Twin Towers.
Sgt. Edwin Morales, an Army reserve member, was dressed in full uniform and carried a framed photo collage of his cousin, firefighter Ruben Correa, who was killed at the hotel at 3 World Trade Center.
The collage was made by a student from Maryland for a class project and was presented to Morales on Tuesday morning.
“He’s here with us now,” Morales said of his cousin. “Never forget this day. Never forget anyone who died.”
The crowd included numerous dignitaries including Mayor Bill de Blasio, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Rep. Peter King.
After the first moment of silence, relatives of the attacks' victims began reading the names, in alphabetical order, of the women, men and children who died 17 years ago.
World Trade Center subway station re-opened
Only two days ago, the Cortlandt Street subway station, which was located directly below the World Trade Center, was re-opened for the first time. When the towers came down, parts of the buildings tore through the terminal. The devastation left a gaping hole above the station, and twisted the massive metal beams of the roof.
After nearly two decades, the newly rebuilt and renamed WTC Cortlandt station opened just days before the 17th anniversary of the attacks. Work only began on the project in 2015 because New York's Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) was not able to gain control of the site until then.
Flight 93 wind chime memorial
Dedicated on Sunday, the new Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pennsylvania honors the heroes of Flight 93 who thwarted the hijackers' plans on 9/11. Standing in a field amid the rolling hills of central Pennsylvania, the "Tower of Voices" stands 93 feet tall.
The tower is a work in progress. It currently holds eight windchimes. But will soon be expanded to 40 – one for each passenger and crew member who died here on September 11, 2001.