Friday, July 04, 2008

9/11 Flight Crew Memorial dedicated

9/11 Flight Crew MemorialA memorial to the pilots and flight attendants who died in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks was dedicated today in Texas. The 9/11 Flight Crew Memorial, which is located in Grapevine, TX, was created to commemorate the heroism of the 33 crew members who lost their lives after their aircraft were hijacked by terrorists on that awful morning in 2001.

The memorial depicts two pilots, two flight attendants, and a child passenger. The sculpture also includes two eagles, signifying the two airlines -- United and American -- that lost aircraft and crew on 9/11. Unveiled today, July 4, 2008, the 9/11 Flight Crew Memorial is the only memorial dedicated solely to the flight crews who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.

Sculptor Dean Thompson created the memorial, which is 18 feet high. His wife, Valerie, is an American Airlines flight attendant. Speaking about the memorial to a reporter at CBS 11 TV, Valerie Thompson said, "I hope people recognize that we were the first responders on that day. We had a very important role in helping protect the public."

A message on the website of the 9/11 Flight Crew Memorial Foundation explains:
The name of the bronze art is VALOR – COMMITMENT – DEDICATION. The valor was demonstrated in the professionalism and courage shown by those who perished on that fateful day from the most vicious attack ever on American soil. Their names will always be engraved into stone and history and in our hearts. The crews who climbed back aboard when the sky was reopened demonstrated unparalleled valor going into the unknown to bring everyone home to their loved ones.

Commitment was later demonstrated along with the same courage when their companies called upon them to keep their companies alive by giving up pay that they earned, to keep solvency available in the terrible years following. They still have not been repaid for this courageous effort, but they demonstrated commitment and continue to work under conditions worse than ever.

Dedication to their jobs making safety in the sky their number one issue is paramount. They have been pushed to the limit with rest time barely reaching minimums. Flying safe aircraft has been questionable as recently demonstrated by actions taken by FAA to this regard.

We are honoring all flight crews of all airlines internationally. We are placing this memorial under the flight path into one of America’s largest and busiest airports, Dallas Fort Worth International. It will be visible from the sky when approaching from the North or departing to the North.
For information about the memorial, and more photos, visit the 9/11 Flight Crew Memorial Foundation website.

[Photo Source]