They came together to recall the unforgettable.
Locals gathered in Coney Island and Marine Park this week to pay tribute to people who lost their lives in the Sept. 11 terror attacks. A Gerritsen Beach resident who attended the Marine Park ceremony said the memorials are an important part of remembering the lives lost.
“I feel we’re not supposed to forget about the situation that we had — it was terrible,” said Bob Banham.
The night before the 17th anniversary of the attacks, locals gathered for the annual “Night Before” ceremony at MCU Park’s “Wall of Remembrance,” which features the images of first responders who were killed in the attacks. Attendees took part in a candlelight vigil while people affected by the attacks spoke of lost loved ones and their memories of the day. At the end of the event, attendees hung flowers on the granite wall.
One Coney Island resident brought his Cub Scout troop from the neighborhood’s Pack 16 so the youngsters could learn more about the human impact of the attack from the family and friends of those most affected.
“They’re still at a young age, and a lot of them don’t know exactly what 9-11 is,” said troop leader Michael Moscol. “So I thought, let’s go listen to some of the stories so they can learn exactly what it is.”
The Fire Department’s deputy assistant chief Brooklyn borough commander, Wayne Cartwright, said that loved ones of those killed appreciated the show of support from locals who came out to memorialize the fallen heroes.
“I think the families that were there to remember their fallen appreciate the event and memorializing those who are on the wall,” he said.
A Midwood resident who lost multiple friends in the attack and watched it unfold from St. Paul’s Chapel in Manhattan said he has attended the memorial ceremony at MCU Park every year to remember the tragedy with his neighbors.
“The event was beautiful. I have gone every year — I just don’t forget,” said Lee Speiser. “I’ve seen the wall go from nothing to where it is now.”
The next day, locals gathered at a memorial ceremony in Marine Park, hosted by state Sen. Marty Golden (R–Marine Park), that featured patriotic music, a candle-lighting ceremony, a 21-gun salute, and a moment of silence.