WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Westchester County paid tribute to those who died in the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001, including 111 Westchester residents and 12 former residents.
County Executive Rob Astorino presided over the 13th anniversary ceremony that took place on Thursday, Sept. 11, at The Rising, the county's 9/11 memorial at Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla.
“Each year, we read the names of the brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers, grandparents, aunts, uncles, friends and neighbors that our county lost on 9/11,” Astorino said. “We start with William F. Abrahamson and end with Joseph J. Zuccula. Some were the people closest to us in the whole world. Others were people we never met. When we are done, the 123 names become our prayer of mourning, thanksgiving and hope.”
“They say time heals, and it does but it can never completely fill the emptiness left behind when good lives are cut short. There is no replacement for what can never be. For balls never thrown or caught. Graduations unattended. Weddings missed. An empty seat forever at the dinner table. Our prayer of the names is our way of saying we miss you, and we will always miss you. It is also our way of honoring you. Good lives cannot be forgotten – especially when they are taken so tragically, so wantonly, so needlessly. In your memory, we build a legacy to the best inside of all of us.”
More than 500 family members and residents attended the ceremony.
The ceremony was part of various remembrance activities throughout Westchester organized around the theme of using volunteerism as a way to honor those who died. Many of these events took place earlier in the day at the County Center.