More than a year after bringing a 17 1/2-foot box beam from the wreckage of the World Trade Center to Tiffin, the city's 911 Memorial Committee on Sunday dedicated a permanent memorial with the beam at its center.
A memorial service that organizers hope will become an annual event is to be held Tuesday for Tiffin police officers and firefighters. It is one of many events in the Toledo area scheduled to commemorate the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
"When we had an opportunity to get this beam we just decided, let's go get it and we'll figure out what we're going to do afterwards," said Tiffin Firefighter Chris Hafley, chairman of the 911 Memorial Committee. "It kind of grew from there."
Like other communities that secured artifacts from the World Trade Center, Tiffin was obligated to use the massive beam as part of a free, public, educational display about the attacks. Mr. Hafley said the committee has raised close to $160,000 to build the memorial on land provided by the Seneca Industrial and Economic Development Corp.
Situated near the corner of Washington and Water streets, the memorial incorporates 21,000 pounds of black Indian granite shaped to resemble the Pentagon. The 6,238-pound box beam is situated across the granite. To one side is a 40-inch-tall granite pedestal representing the 40 passengers who died in the crash of United Airlines Flight 93 in a Pennsylvania field.
"The idea of the whole memorial was to incorporate all of the events -- the Pentagon, the World Trade Center, and Flight 93," he said.
The memorial includes a Japanese red maple tree signifying serenity and calm as well as a callery pear tree similar to the "Survivor Tree" salvaged from the rubble in New York City and nursed back to health.
"People won't see a memorial like this anywhere in this area," Mr. Hafley said, adding that it was designed by his son-in-law, Tiffin native Michael Work.
Among the other events planned today and Tuesday:
● The Toledo Fire and Rescue Department will dedicate the city's new Fire Station No. 6 at 1155 Oak St. in East Toledo as part of the department's Sept. 11 commemoration at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.
● The United Muslim Association of Toledo will hold an interfaith 9/11 "service of remembrance, hope, and prayer" at 4 p.m. today at Toledo Masjid of Al-Islam Islamic Center, 722 E. Bancroft St.
● The city of Sylvania will hold a Patriots Day 9/11 ceremony at 11 a.m. Tuesday in River Centre Park at Main and Monroe streets. Veterans, firefighters, and police officers are to be recognized at the ceremony, which also will feature local officials, Town Crier Michael Leiber, and a portion of the Northview High School band.
● At Owens Community College in Perrysburg Township, a Sept. 11 memorial display will be open for viewing beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday in the Center for Fine and Performing Arts rotunda. The documentary film 102 Minutes That Changed America is to play continuously from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday in the Mainstage Theatre at the Center for Fine and Performing Arts Mainstage Theatre.
● In Temperance, Monroe County Community College's Whitman Center will be host to a panel presentation by local residents who went to New York to provide volunteer assistance after the Sept. 11 attacks. The program, free and open to the public, is to start at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Room 2.
The college also is to be host to the exhibit "September 11: A Timeline," which is on loan from the New York State Museum. It will be available to the public for free viewing in the Whitman Center during regular hours -- 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Friday.
● Notre Dame Academy and St. Ursula Academy will take part in the 9/11 Blood Battle to see which of the Catholic girls' schools can procure the most blood donations. The challenge is being held in remembrance of the terrorist attacks and in honor of the National Day of Service.
Students, parents, alumnae, and community members are welcome to donate blood at the American Red Cross of Toledo, 3100 W. Central Ave., from Tuesday through Sept. 20. Hours are 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday, 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, and 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.
Contact Jennifer Feehan at: email@example.com or 419-724-6129.