Jon Stolpe Stretched

What's S-t-r-e-t-c-h-i-n-g me now?

The 9/11 Memorial

Our first stop during our visit to New York City last week was to Ground Zero and the recently opened 9/11 Memorial.  The memorial is located on the grounds of the World Trade Center twin towers that were destroyed when terrorists crashed two planes into the buildings on September 11, 2001.  The memorial consists of two pools located in the footprints of the original towers.  The names of the victims of 9/11 along with those who died in a previous terrorist plot in 1993 are inscribed in stone and are located at the perimeters of each of these pools.

It was a moving experience to visit this memorial.  As we looked at the names and observed the water falling into the 30 foot deep pools, we noticed a family who had just found the name of a loved one on the perimeter stones.  See this family shed a few tears as they rubbed their fingers against the engraved name brought a reality to our visit that I hadn’t expected.  I didn’t know anyone who was killed on September 11th, but I remember the surreal feeling of watching the normally busy skies around Allentown, PA suddenly become quiet.  I remember catching news reports as I went to lunch with some fellow construction workers and as I drove home that day.  It hardly seemed possible.

Seeing the site of the World Trade Center Towers reminded me of these events, but it also brought some positive thoughts and feelings as well.  As we prepared to leave the memorial and head up to Midtown, I had a feeling of hope as we walked by the construction sites of many new buildings that are going up around the 9/11 Memorial.  I was reminded that good can come out of such tragedy.  And I was inspired by the challenge to re-discover unity.

Where have you been that has stirred a variety of emotional responses?  What was your response?

Advertisements

November 29, 2011 - Posted by | experiences, looking back, new experiences, thoughts

16 Comments »

  1. I can only imagine the emotions I would have felt there. I’ve been to the Vietnam memorial, WWII memorial, etc. But nothing that was really an occasion in my lifetime. Nothing that would have impacted me deeply like that.

    I can remember being emotionally touched in Washington DC. Seeing all the statues and the opulence, and then thinking that none of that will hold a candle to heaven.

    Comment by Loren Pinilis | November 29, 2011 | Reply

    • I agree. I remember seeing The Vietnam Memorial with my dad. It was moving to see his tears and to understand that he lost friends whose names are on the wall. The WWII Memorial made me think a lot of my grandfathers who both served in this war. I’m sure they knew people who lost their lives serving our country. Both visits were moving.

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  2. One place i have been was Gettysburg. I love reading about the Civil War and to do the battlefield and the wax museum and re-enactions was moving.

    Comment by bill (cycleguy) | November 29, 2011 | Reply

    • We went to Gettysburg a few years ago. There is so much to learn by visiting this area.

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  3. When Dave & I visited the USS Arizona, Pearl Harbor, when in Hoholulu. This was one of the MOST touching experience that I ever had. I just automatically broke down crying. It is a sensation that I cannot even explain. Also when we visited the crash site of Flight 93 , in Shanksville, Pa. It gives you the (almost) same feeling. It’s something that is very hard to explain. It really makes you appreciate life so much!!!

    Comment by Donna Shirley | November 29, 2011 | Reply

    • I remember seeing the oil that still leaks from the USS Arizona. Seeing the oil patch on the water definitely brings reality to the whole scene. We haven’t been to Shanksville yet (although we drove by it on the way home from Mom and Dad’s one time).

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  4. The most moved I have ever been was by the Vietnam Wall in Washington D.C. It was the first monument I saw the first time I went there, and it remains the most moving monument I have ever seen. Washington Monument was powerful, Lincoln was impressive, Jefferson Memorial startled me with its understated power, but none compare to the Wall.

    Comment by Jonathan | November 29, 2011 | Reply

    • As I commented on your blog, I remember visiting The Vietnam War Memorial with my dad for the first time. It’s difficult to describe my feelings as I saw his tears that day.

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  5. […] my usual theme, but if you will oblige me I think it’s worth it. On another blog I follow, Stretched, the author, Jon Stolpe, challenged readers to mention a memorial that they found moving. It got me […]

    Pingback by Most Moving | The Hole on the End of the Bible Belt | November 30, 2011 | Reply

  6. this is on my bucket list…lol…

    Comment by Arny Sanchez | November 30, 2011 | Reply

    • definitely worth seeing…

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  7. Wow, what a meaningful visit. Beautiful pictures too. I would love to visit NYC one day.

    I visited a majestic, old chapel in the Czech Republic as a teenager. I remember being moved that people had been worshiping God in that grand place for hundreds of years. I felt caught up in a flow of worship that has been moving through the ages.

    Comment by Beck | November 30, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks for the comment on the pictures. I take that as a real compliment coming from someone who is a REAL photographer.

      My wife would love to see that church in the Czech Republic. I wonder if any of her relatives worshiped there.

      Comment by jonstolpe | December 4, 2011 | Reply

  8. […] 7.  The 9/11 Memorial […]

    Pingback by November 2011 Top Posts « Jon Stolpe Stretched | December 1, 2011 | Reply

  9. […] me on despite being miles away.  On Tuesday, I shared my thoughts about our recent visit to the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero.  Wednesday featured my thoughts about seeing Mary Poppins on Broadway.  Thursday, […]

    Pingback by Thanksgiving Saturday! Week In Review… « Jon Stolpe Stretched | December 3, 2011 | Reply

  10. […] me on despite being miles away.  On Tuesday, I shared my thoughts about our recent visit to the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero.  Wednesday featured my thoughts about seeing Mary Poppins on Broadway.  Thursday, […]

    Pingback by December 3rd, 2011 Week In Review… « Jon Stolpe Stretched | December 3, 2011 | Reply


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: