The featured image above is the last known photo of the twin towers. It was taken about 15 minutes before the first plane hit tower two by a photographer who was actually taken photos of the Brooklyn Bridge.
09/14/2015 we arrived in Manhattan, NYC. After checking in to our hotel we took a walk in Times Square. I took a few pictures of the busy, crazy wonderful place that Times Square is.
There is sort of a bleacher that was built here so people can climb up and sit for a while and watch the activity, also to get a better view for picture taking. This is one of the Times Square areas where they closed the streets to traffic and made pedestrian plazas.
There was a lot of NYPD presence.
On 9/15/15 we went on a taxi tour of Brooklyn with Peter Franklin AKA Gabby Cabby. Peter gave us an in depth tour of Brooklyn, the history and the neighborhoods and the diversity. In Brooklyn the neighborhoods are known by the ethnicity of the people who live there.
Brooklyn pictures from Jim’s camera.
It was a very nice day. Jim and I had no idea Brooklyn was so large. Peter is a very interesting character, a fun day. We went to a Turkish cafe for lunch.
On 09/16/15 we went to the 9/11 Memorial Museum and Memorial Plaza. We went on a guided tour of the museum and heard many stories as we walked the museum with a passionate docent. The museum employees work for the NYC Port Authority. The fees etc. in the museum go towards the cost of running the museum and it’s grounds.
We chose to go on a guided tour, but there are also entry tickets for self tour.
Jim and I both felt we needed to go and see what had been built to memorialize the victims of the Al Qaeda terrorist attacks on 9/11.
This was a very emotional day.
The Memorial Plaza and Memorial Museum will ensure that those who come here, hear the stories, and see the real structural remains, and the real pictures, and the real people stories will never forget what happened here. And that we never forget the horror of what the Al Qaeda terrorists did on 9/11 when they attacked our country.
The guides for the Memorial Plaza are volunteers. They are typically victims or victim’s family, survivors, and some are people who lived in the area when it was attacked.
The fees for guided tours go into a fund for victims and victim’s families. Here again we chose a guided tour, but it isn’t a requirement.
The 9/11 Memorial Plaza is highlighted by the two Memorial Fountains, one set in the footprint of each tower. The names of everyone who died in the 1993 terrorist attack and the 2001 terrorist attacks are engraved around the fountains. The fountains appear to have no ending, as they are a tribute to all who died.
We went on a guided tour of the Memorial Plaza with two volunteers. One was a first responder, the other a survivor. At different points during our walk they told a part of their story.
The first responder had four years with NYPD and twenty six with NYCFD. He told us a few pieces of his story, one being day four or five when someone behind him called out to him wanting to know what he wanted him to do. He was a fireman from Mexico City who had just driven 56 hours to come and help. He said volunteers came from all over.
He also told us about something that happened the first night. A female police officer came up to hand him a flip phone and told him to call his wife and let her know he was alive. He told her he already had. She asked for his wife’s phone number and called the number. After speaking with his wife she hung up and came over and grabbed his face and kissed him on the mouth and said “your wife told me to give you a good night kiss”. He had never seen her before.
Apparently she was trying to make sure that everyone she came across had called home.
Another story he told us was he had two nephews who were also NYCFD. After search was in day 6 he finally had to tell the families that they were not going to be found alive.
The survivor told us of the day he was at work on the 69th floor of WTC2 when the building began moving and shaking, everything fell silent, power out.
The first thing he did was run to get the emergency wheel chair for his co-worker John, since the stairs were not wide enough for the wheel chair John worked in. He and three other coworkers, two on front, two on back, began carrying John and the chair down the stairs.
When they got down about twenty floors there were first responders running up the stairs, so they asked them to step out and wait, which they did. Eventually the five co-workers got out of the building before it collapsed. This gentleman, Paul, had also been at work the day of the first terrorist attack in 1993.
WTC 2 was the first attacked but the second to go down.
Here are a couple of pictures from before we went in the museum.
The two pools and the park area sit in the footprint of the twin towers that went down in 9/11/01.
The 9/11 Memorial Museum.
There are some areas throughout the museum with steel beams and other pieces of wreckage, there was a mangled airplane window at one place. Near the piece above, and some others, you can still smell the burn.
On a clear, sunny late summer day in September 2001, Al Qaeda terrorists aboard three hijacked passenger planes carried out coordinated suicide attacks against the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon near Washington DC, killing everyone on board the planes and nearly 3,000 people on the ground. A fourth hijacked plane crashed into a Pennsylvania field, killing all on board, after passengers and crew attempted to wrest control from the hijackers. It is believed that this plane was aimed at the White House.
This is the last known photograph taken of the WTC towers. it was taken about 15 minutes before the first tower, tower two, was attacked. The photographer who took the picture was actually taking photos of the Brooklyn Bridge.
Portions of retaining walls
This is one of the slurry walls which was used to keep the water of the Hudson River out of the excavation when building the original towers. The projection on the walls are tie-backs that anchored the walls to the bedrock under the Hudson River.
When TWTC was built they excavated down almost 70 feet for the foundation, and all of the soil that came out was dumped in the Hudson River to reclaim some river frontage.
There were 7 underground levels.
Notes, badges pictures
There are over 1,115 missing whose remains have still not been identified as of March 2015.
There is a tile for every victim killed
Number of firefighters and paramedics killed: 343
Number of NYPD officers: 23
Number of Port Authority police officers: 37
Total death toll to date (September 2015) 2,977
There continues to be an ongoing effort to try to identify remains.
Notes about the missing
This is a 1971 Honda motorcycle that had been purchased by a fireman as a project for restoration. When he did not survive the attack, his surviving teammates did the restoration and donated it to the museum. It is now called the Dream Bike.
A second grade teacher sent the following from her class,
The towers were of an open floor configuration with all of the building support in its exterior walls. They were built in the late 60’s & early 70’s. The first tower opened in 1971, the second in 1972.
There was much support for New Yorkers after 9/11.
Shanksville PA where the 4th plane went down. This was the plane believed to have been aimed for the White House but the passengers fought the terrorists.
One World Trade Center, directly on the right Seven World Trade Center. Here is a map World Trade Center Ground
The pictures above are portions of a bronze mural that was presented to ladder 10 which is right across the street from the 9/11 Memorial Plaza. It was given to ladder 10 by a NYC law firm. One of the attorneys from the firm was also a volunteer fireman. He died when the towers collapsed. Ladder 10 lost six fire fighters.
The only survivor tree.
- Total number killed in attacks in New York: 2,753
- Number of firefighters and paramedics killed: 343
- Number of NYPD officers: 23
- Number of Port Authority police officers: 37
- Number of WTC companies in the towers that lost people: 128
- Number of employees who died in Tower One: 1,402
- Number of employees who died in Tower Two: 614
- Number of employees lost at Cantor Fitzgerald: 658
- Number of U.S. troops killed in Operation Enduring Freedom: 2,343
- Number of nations whose citizens were killed in attacks: 115
- Ratio of men to women who died: 3:1
- Age of the greatest number who died: between 35 and 39
- Bodies found “intact”: 291
- Remains found: 21,906
- Number of families who got no remains: 1,717
- Estimated units of blood donated to the New York Blood Center:36,000
As of March 2015 the number of families whose loved ones have received no remains from the terrorist attack on 9/11/01 is 40% of the victims 1,113 still missing. These were real people with real families.
Jim and I took our first trip to New York City in Spring 1989. We went up to the top of the World Trade Center and took pictures from the viewing level at the top.
September 14, 2015 New York City back to NYC