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Remembering 9/11: 3 Ways to Honor the Fallen

On September 11, 2001, the world watched as American history changed forever. The illusion of safety, that so many people believed in wholeheartedly, was shattered. This had lasting physiological and physical impacts on the population of the United States and is especially prevalent for adults and children directly impacted by the disaster.

The fabric of so many families was altered permanently due to both the loss of loved ones and the mental health struggles of survivors. Each year it’s important to recognize the anniversary of 9/11, along with the heroes who didn’t survive. Here are a few influential and respectful ways to honor the fallen.

Make a donation

The majority of men and women who lost their lives perished at the site of the World Trade Center. Many fought tirelessly to save people trapped inside of the towers before and after the collapse. First responders and those living and working in the area for prolonged periods of time still live with the effects of 9/11 today. Due to the exposure of toxic air pollutants, those people have developed life-threatening respiratory illnesses. These courageous men and women live every day with a variety of cancers, chronic sinusitis, interstitial lung disease, and asbestosis. You can make a contribution to them, and those who have already passed due to these complications, by donating to WTC Victim Compensation Fund. This fund supports those who continue to live with these illnesses and compensates families who have recently lost loved ones to the World Trade Center Dust. You can make a real difference in their lives with your financial aid.

Hold a private gathering

If your family was directly influenced by the death of a family member or friend, the anniversary of the attacks is probably the most challenging time of year. To keep the memories of your loved one alive, hold a gathering in their honor. The best way for them to live on is to pass their stories onto the next generation. Have old friends share anecdotes. You may be surprised by a story you’ve never heard before. You could also honor them on their birthday. Prepare their favorite meal, find his or her preferred drink of choice at the liquor store, and raise a glass to the wonderful person who touched your life. The pain may be momentarily eased with the support of others.

Visit the 9/11 memorial

Honor those who lost their lives by taking a pilgrimage to one of the memorials centered on the events of that day. The 9/11 Memorial and Museum in New York City is the principal institution concerned with September 11, 2001. This museum not only explores what happened on that day, but also documents the continued impact and significance of the disaster on our country through media, narratives, and artifacts. The monument itself lists all of the names of those who perished. If you’re looking for a specific name, the website can guide you to its location. Leave a rose by someone’s name and take time by the pools to reflect. The 9/11 Memorial doesn’t only honor those killed at the World Trade Center. It also displays the names of those who lost their lives due to the crash of Flight 93, the attack on the Pentagon, and those killed in the 1993 bombing. Other memorials include the 9/11 Pentagon Memorial and the Flight 93 Memorial, which focus specifically on those who lost their lives at those locations. America will never recover what it lost on that day; however, taking the time to make a donation, toast to the memory of your loved one, and reflect at a memorial will continue and honor their legacy.

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