1. Fact: At 8:46 a.m., the hijacked American Airlines Flight 11 flew into the North Tower of the World Trade Center. At 9:03 a.m. a second plane, United Airlines Flight 175, was flown into the South Tower. Within 102 minutes both towers collapsed.
Personal Experience Question: When Lee arrived at the site he said it looked like a horror movie. What happened to everything in the buildings due to the force of the collapse?
2. Fact: The members of the Fire Department of New York were charged with going into the World Trade Center to put out fires and help people get out. The New York City Police Department was primarily charged with safely moving people out of the area and guarding other potential targets. Eight million New Yorkers were provided assistance and protection by the New York Police Department. At the end of the day, 343 FDNY firefighters, 23 NYPD police officers and 37 Port Authority police were killed.
Personal Experience Question: How do you think the loss of so many members affected the police and fire departments? Has your community ever lost a member of the police or fire department? How was that loss commemorated?
3. Fact: Fire and police departments have a history of generations from the same family choosing to work in these demanding jobs. The “Band of Dads” encouraged the careful search of all of the materials at the site, so that as many victims as possible could be found. More than 20,000 human remains were found at the site, and DNA samples were used to try to identify them. Fewer than half of the victims have been identified thus far.
Personal Experience Question: Why do you think that the “Band of Dads,” who worked together for 9 months, served as an inspiration to the other people working in the grueling environment? How has DNA been used in your community to solve a crime?
4. Fact: The plans for the memorial at the World Trade Center site began with discussions among state and city officials, business and civic leaders, family members and people who live and work in Lower Manhattan. The National September 11th Memorial & Museum is being built on the World Trade Center site.
Personal Experience Question: Why do you think it was so difficult to come to a decision about the creation and details of a memorial in the middle of the financial district of Lower Manhattan? If you were helping to create this national memorial what groups would you need to consult?
5. Fact: National and international tourists began making pilgrimages in great numbers to visit the World Trade Center site and to pay tribute to the tragic events and victims.
Personal Experience Question: What was Lee’s main goal in opening the Tribute WTC Visitor Center? How does the sharing of personal experiences about 9/11 help accomplish Lee’s goal of educating the public?