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9/11 remembrance affected by COVID-19

Staff Report

The 19th anniversary of the September 11 attacks on Americans will be honored in many ways across the country. However, as COVID-19 safety precautions are being followed, the ceremonies that have been held, especially in areas affected by the virus, will change.

Missing from this year’s remembrance will be the two towers of light that rise annually since 2002 near ground zero.

Eighty eight specially made lights are used to create the projections, which tower over New York City until dawn on Sept. 12. But earlier this year, September 11 Memorial & Museum, which is responsible for the tribute, announced that it was canceling this year’s display because of the coronavirus crisis.

Typically the lights can be seen 60 miles away, but more than 40 stage hands and electricians work closely on the installation for several days.

The museum released a statement that said the decision to cancel was made “after concluding the health risks during the pandemic were far too great for the large crew.”

However, an alternative has been devised to honor those who lost their lives by tall buildings across New York illuminating their spires and facades with blue lights.

The pandemic as adversely affected ticket sales and visitors touring the museum. Because of lost revenue, the organization has had layoffs and has closed the museum, though the outdoor memorial opened July 4.

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