May 30, 2019 A 9/11 Memorial Glade, honoring thousands of people who have fallen ill or died due to exposure to toxins in the aftermath of the September 11th attacks opened Thursday in New York City.
Family members of recovery workers who died after digging through smoldering ruins and recovery workers who are still struggling with illness participated Thursday’s dedication ceremony for a new section of the 9/11 memorial at the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan.
The memorial glade sits on the southwest corner of the 8-acre plaza, and includes a path flanked with six huge, sloping stone structures made of granite slabs inlaid with steel recovered from the fallen trade center towers.
Comedian and former host of the Daily Show, Jon Stewart, who has been a voice for first responders since the attacks, was among the hundreds who walked its pathway after the dedication. Stewart told reporters, “it’s been a privilege to be a part of this.”
Former New York City Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, the chairman of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, told the hundreds gathered on the plaza for the ceremony.
“Today we are dedicating this memorial glade to all who became sick or died because of causes related to the attacks and to all the men and women who took part in the rescue and recovery effort that ended on this date 17 years ago.”
During his testimony on Capitol Hill in February, an emotional Jon Stewart told lawmakers:
“This is your opportunity to write a final chapter for these men and women who fought for 18 years — they fought when nobody believed they were sick, they fought when nobody believed their sickness was caused by 9/11, they fought when nobody thought their health care was worth paying for, they fought every step of the way. And it is an embarrassment to us and our country.”
Michael Bloomberg echoed that sentiment at the closing of his speech at Thursday’s Memorial Glade dedication.
“We have a duty to care for those who need it and to honor the memory of those who died. The memorial glade helps us to fulfill that duty.”