9/11 memorials pay tribute to victims’ sacrifice

The National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial is seen in the foreground after the U.S. flag is unfurled Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018, at the Pentagon on the 17th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The 9/11 Memorial in New York City features twin reflecting pools where the Twin Towers once stood. Edging the pools are bronze panels, inscribed with the names of the 2,977 who perished. A pear tree, severely damaged on 9/11 but nurtured back to health, stands on the grounds as a living symbol of resilience, survival and rebirth.

In rural Pennsylvania, where American Airlines Flight 93 crashed after passengers and crew thwarted hijackers’ planned attack on the U.S. Capitol, a Wall of Names commemorates the 40 who lost their lives. A boulder marks the crash site.

And in Virginia, the Pentagon Memorial faces the exterior wall where American Airlines Flight 77 struck the military headquarters, killing 184 people. Benches bearing the name of each victim are set above a lighted pool of flowing water, transforming the site into a contemplative space of remembrance and homage.