Pelham commemorates the 20th anniversary of 9/11 terrorist attacks

Members of the community gathered Saturday at the Pelham 9/11 Memorial to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks and honor the ten Pelham residents who lost their lives that awful day. 

Joe Durnin led the memorial event. Reflecting on the attack 20 years ago, he said he remembered people being glued to their televisions as firefighters and police searched for survivors. Durnin said, “After 9/11, we were not Democratic or Republican, black or white, rich or poor. We were all Americans.”  

Pelham Supervisor Daniel McLaughlin referenced a research study that asked Americans from different demographics, “What are the ten historical events that have had the greatest impact on the United States within your lifetime?” More than 76% answered the attacks on 9/11. He reminded the community of how much of an impact the attacks had and will continue to have each year on 9/11.

Many other community leaders were in attendance and shared remarks, including Pelham Manor Mayor Jennifer Monachino Lapey, Village of Pelham Mayor Chance Mullen, members of the police and fire departments, and religious leaders. 

Former Town Supervisor Joe Solimine Sr. described the process that led to the creation of the Pelham memorial on Herman Avenue in 2005. There are nine oak trees, and there was a tenth tree that was damaged in hurricane Sandy, which represent the Pelham community members that lost their lives. A lantern is turned on each night so that the victims are never in the dark. The granite is the focal part of the monument.

Finally, the three pathways symbolize the fact people take different paths when grieving. “I hope this park can be an example of what we can do together,” Solimine said.