Anniversary of the End of Recovery Efforts at Ground Zero

May 30, 2013

Letter by 9/11 Memorial President Joe Daniels on the Anniversary of the Formal End of Recovery Efforts at Ground Zero

Dear first responders and recovery and rescue workers,

On behalf of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, I want to express my deep appreciation to you and the thousands of men and women who dedicated themselves so selflessly to the recovery efforts that followed the 9/11 attacks.

Eleven years ago today, we marked the formal end of the Ground Zero recovery effort with the ceremonial removal of the "Last Column" from the World Trade Center site. When the 9/11 Memorial Museum opens next year, this 58-ton piece of steel, rising over 36 feet high, will stand as a symbol of the spirit of unity and dedication that brought us together after 9/11. It still carries the markings and inscriptions you placed there, commemorating the sacrifices of so many.

The Last Column is just one testament to the dedication you and your fellow workers showed at Ground Zero. You cleared the way for our city to heal and rebuild. A place made sacred through tragic loss is now also one of remembrance and new life, thanks to your service.

The story of the recovery efforts is key to the 9/11 history that will be preserved in the Museum. Each individual recovery worker will be honored through the 9/11 Recovery Workers Registry and Scroll of Honor, which will be featured next to the Last Column in the Museum's soaring Foundation Hall. I am tremendously grateful to all of you who provided your information through last year's Thank You Tribute event and through our website. We'll have exciting news to share about this project in the coming months and look forward to staying in touch with you. If you have not yet provided your information and would like to, I invite you to do so by clicking here.

Today, thousands of visitors to the 9/11 Memorial will express their thanks to you in messages written across special panels near the Memorial's south pool. If you can, I hope you'll visit the Memorial today, as we honor all of you who spent grueling days and sleepless nights searching for survivors, all of you who came from across the country to help, and all of you who stayed at Ground Zero through dangerous and heartbreaking conditions to help bring our city back.

Thank you for your service. It will never be forgotten.

Warm regards,

Joe Daniels
President & CEO