A brief test run gave New York City residents a sneak peek at the 9/11 Tribute in Light in Manhattan. People criticized Mayor Bill de Blasio when the hosts canceled the event. Since then, the hosts have reversed the decision to call off the memorial.
On September 11, twin beams of light will fill the New York skyline where the Twin Towers once stood. This year will be the 19th anniversary of the World Trade center attacks.
The display first started six months after 9/11. The city has held the event every year to remember those lost on that day. This year the coronavirus pandemic threatened the display.
“On the night of September 11, from dusk until dawn, these two beloved beams of light will again shine as beacons of our city’s resilience,” Alice M. Greenwald said in a statement. Greenwald is the president and CEO of the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. “And this year, they will be powered by the will of the community.”
The museum called off the 9/11 memorial due to the pandemic.
The museum initially called off the event because they felt concerned for the health risks to workers who had to set up the display. To create the memorial event, 40 stagehands and electricians work together in close quarters for more than a week.
Paul Nunziato, president of the Port Authority Police Benevolent Association, criticized the New York Mayor for allowing the event to be cancelled.
“For all the nonsense the mayor has allowed in recent months, what is the problem with putting the lights up?” he told the Daily News.
However, de Blasio does not control whether the event is held or cancelled, according to the Daily Mail. Nunziato said cancelling the event would further “demoralize” New Yorkers after being hit hard by the pandemic.
The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation offered to produce the display instead, but the museum decided to resurrect its plans for the tribute after-all.
“It has become an iconic symbol that both honors those killed and celebrates the unbreakable spirit of New York,” the museum said in a statement.
The museum will assemble the display on the roof of the Battery Parking Garage south of the 9/11 Memorial. Residents can see the beams for 60-miles around lower Manhattan.
[H/T: Daily Mail]