We’re just days away from the 17th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on 9-11.
And this year, a new memorial has been erected to honor the 40 passengers and crew members aboard United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed into a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
“It’s the first visible memorial feature that you see as you enter, so it’s like a welcoming beacon or a landmark that introduces the memorial to the visitors,” said Paul Murdoch, architect.
Architect Paul Murdoch looks at the Tower of Voices as a living memorial in sound.
Soon to have 40 chimes for the 40 passengers and crew members aboard flight 93 on September 11th, 2001.
“Those 40 heroes that rose up to fight the terrorists that morning,” said Gordon Felt. “That’s a critical part of the story, the choice that they made, not to sit back and allow others to dictate the terms on how their lives would end.”
Gordon Felt’s brother, Edward was one of those passengers.
He was on a business trip that morning. He was a father to two daughters.
“He was a very brilliant, loving, giving, mentoring man that we miss dearly,” said Felt.
And now a 93-foot tower stands as a symbol of strength and courage–echoing the voices of his brother and 39 others.
“It’s not just an emotional memorial for those of us who have lived through it, especially those who have lost ones, but something that needs to be here to tell the story of what happened,” said Murdoch.
It’s the last major addition to the memorial site, and the only one of it’s kind in the world.
“The sound will always be changing with the wind from the site, and in that way it’s ever changing and becomes more of a living memorial,” said Murdoch.
17 years later–an audible reminder of what took place on Flight 93.
“The fact is that 13 people made 37 phone calls, so through their voices, through their conversations, they were able to learn what was going on in real time,” said Stephen Clark, Superintendent, National Parks of Western Pennsylvania.
“It’s a very special place. Our sacred ground. the visitor’s center, the Tower of Voices,” added Felt. “Each designed, again, to instruct, to educate and to inspire.”
The dedication service had 40 family members, friends and partners to ring each of the eight chimes that are currently installed.
The remaining chimes are expected to be delivered and installed later this fall.