People at Saturday’s Flight 93 memorial ceremony in Somerset County looked back to 2001 during the event, but they also looked ahead to next year.
September 11, 2011 will be the tenth anniversary of the terror attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people in New York, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
It’s also the date Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and other officials have vowed to dedicate the first phase of a permanent memorial to the 40 passengers and crew who died on-board Flight 93 as they fought with terrorists.
Organizers still need to raise 18 million dollars to fund the project, but Reverend Paul Britton, whose sister Marion died on 9/11, is optimistic.
"I think it’s doable. I think the architect believes it’s doable. And with the enthusiasm of people working on it, it will happen."
Interior Secretary Ken Salazar vowed to make sure the first phase of a permanent memorial will be complete by September 11, 2011.
"We are on the way, with the Friends of Families of Flight 93 and so many others, to be able to dedicate Flight 93 on the tenth year anniversary of 9/11."
The centerpiece of the first phase will be a memorial plaza, listing the names of the 40 people on-board the flight. The plaza will follow the plane’s flight path, and give visitors a view of the crash site.
The much more ambitious second phase of the project is expected to be complete in 2014.
First Lady Michelle Obama and other speakers on Saturday spoke about the lessons future generations can learn from the men and women who fought back against the four terrorists. Planners say the memorial will play an important role in telling that story.