Long-delayed Chatham Co. 9/11 memorial may be close to reality - WNCT

Long-delayed Chatham Co. 9/11 memorial may be close to reality

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Chatham County received a 12,000-pound beam from the World Trade Center from the New York Port Authority in March 2011 to create a memorial. (Jody Allen, Contributed) Chatham County received a 12,000-pound beam from the World Trade Center from the New York Port Authority in March 2011 to create a memorial. (Jody Allen, Contributed)
PITTSBORO, N.C. -

A piece of the World Trade Center is in Chatham County, waiting to become part of a permanent memorial.

The county received the 12,000-pound steel beam from the New York Port Authority in March 2011. The goal was to create a memorial in time for the 10-year observance of 9/11; but two years later, that still hasn't happened.

The beam is tucked away in an undisclosed location to prevent vandalism.

Meanwhile, a new group, The Chatham County 9/11 First Responders' Memorial Foundation, made up of first responders, formed in recent months to get the project done.

Firefighter Jody Allen heads that organization and said it has taken time to find the right group, a location for the memorial and a design. He said some government red tape has slowed the process.

The economy also made it hard to collect donations, he said.

Despite the hurdles, the project may be closer to a reality. The group has found a possible spot for the memorial. It would be located in Pittsboro near the fire department and new Chatham County Justice Center.

Allen said they are now waiting to hear from the county commissioners on a price for the land, which could happen in a couple of weeks

Once complete, it will pay tribute to all those affected by 9/11, but also firefighters, EMS, law enforcement and military in the area.

Allen said it will be easier to collect donations and complete the project once they pick a design and a location. The project will be paid for entirely by donations.

The group is looking at design ideas from local artists.

The new goal is to have the memorial in place by next summer and in time for a service to commemorate 9/11 in 2014.

A mailing address is set up for donations and design ideas:

CC First Responders Memorial Foundation
PO Box 328
Pittsboro, N.C. 27312

For more information: http://goldstonfire.com/1st-Responders-Memorial.html

Justin Quesinberry

Justin is a reporter for WNCN and a North Carolina native. He has spent the better part of the last decade covering the news in central North Carolina.  More>>

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