Many people, whichever part of the world they may live in, have their own 9/11 story to tell. But nothing brings out these stories more strongly than a visit to Ground Zero. Even after ten years, these narratives are so powerful that they can take you back in time and take you through the collective memories of grief, terror, shock, anger, fear, sacrifice, courage and hope. The recently inaugurated National September 11 Memorial at what was earlier called Ground Zero will become an important part of travel itinerary for those visiting
. However, the 9/11 memorial housed at the adjacent Manhattan ’s Chapel is also a must see. St. Paul
|St. Paul's Chapel|
The inscription outside the gate summarizes the significance of the Chapel. It was constructed in 1766; it is
’s oldest public building in continuous use; it was witness to the great fire of 1776; it hosted George Washington on his inauguration day and it survived terrorist attacks on 11 Sept 2001. As one enters inside, one can sense a solemn poise and fortitude with which the Chapel responded to the attacks. For weeks and months after the attacks, the Chapel became the site offering food, shelter, emergency relief, security and humanitarian support to all those affected. The Bell of Hope standing outside marks the ‘enduring links between City of Manhattan London and City of ’ that were ‘forged in adversity’. Inside the Chapel, the memorial showcases countless stories, artifacts, pictures and memorabilia that can bring a lump in your throat. New York
There is a sculpture called The Chalice made by Artist Jessica Stammen. Using steel provided by the city officials from the debris of World Trade Centre as the base, she has shown two tree trunks depicting the twin towers designed as the Sycamore tree from Chapel’s courtyard that was struck down in the attack and the ‘hands of God’ enfolding the top of the cup.
There are badges sent by police and firefighters from across the world as a mark of respect to the fire-fighters who gave everything in the line of their duty. There are letters written by family members, picture post cards sent by children, interactive kiosks that describe the rescue efforts, and half-burnt gear and equipment used by the firefighters. And finally, there is a place to light a candle where one can see common people from different faiths and countries taking a moment to silently remember how it all changed the world.