Westchester honors 9/11 victims at 'The Rising'
Tuesday marked 17 years since the 9/11 terror attacks and a special ceremony honored those killed from Westchester.
Families and friends honored the victims today at "The Rising" at the Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla.
The Rising, the memorial honoring the 111 Westchester victims of 9/11, was officially dedicated in 2006 on the fifth anniversary of the attacks. The victims' families chose the spot on the eastern corner of the plaza as well as the design created by architect Fredrick Swartz.
Some visitors never even met the people whose names are engraved on these stones, but they say that doesn't matter. "I take a little extra time every time I'm down here to reflect and think about all the lives that were lost," says Jack Jones, of White Plains.
Victims' families, friends and strangers also come to place flowers along the bottom of "The Rising" called the Circle of Remembrance where there are stones bearing the names of each victim and an inscription from the family.
Some visitors like to step inside the structure to look through the steel beams that reach 80 feet into the sky and intertwine at the top. Many say it's like a direct view to heaven and their loved ones.
Visitors also passed through the Fallen Memorial Walkway dedicated to Westchester soldiers killed in the fight against terrorism. There is also a beam from the World Trade Center donated by former New York Gov. George Pataki.
Westchester County Executive George Latimer was among those to speak. Following the ceremony he announced plans to create an additional memorial for those who have died of 9/11-related illnesses. He hopes a plan for it will be in place by next year.
More than a dozen people from Westchester have died from 9/11-related illnesses.