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River Edge Remembers 9/11 First Responders through Memorial Dedication

After receiving a steel I-beam 11 months ago, River Edge officially dedicated its First Responder's Emergency Memorial outside of Borough Hall

Eleven years have passed since the World Trade Center towers came down and . It's been 11 months since a from one of the towers was brought to the borough for a outside of - the Memorial was dedicated Tuesday afternoon as residents, friends, family and volunteers crowded together in memory.

"FDR referred to Dec. 7, 1941 as a 'date which would live in infamy' and Sept. 11, 2001 is our generations Dec. 7," River Edge PBA member and Police Officer Joseph Starost said. "Everyone remembers where they were when they heard about the attacks, know someone who died or someone who was impacted by it. This steel is a symbol, a stark reminer of what happened that day."

On a rainy Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2011 members of the River Edge , ,  and traveled down Rt. 4 to JFK Airport and back to retrieve a steel I-beam from the World Trade Center that was donated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for the memorial to remember all first responders that were at Ground Zero the day of and the many days after Sept. 11, 2001.

"This is so we may try to remember the heroic efforts of the first responders before, during and after the attacks, who continue to put one foot in front of another," Mayor Sandy Moscaritolo said. "For the first responder's children who will graduate high school and college without a parent to congratulate them, for the daughters who will walk down the aisle without a father, the sons who won't have a mother to cheer them on from the sidelines, the sisters and brothers who can not communicate and finish one another's sentences. Let this monument satnd for the silent acknowledgement of the first responders who survived emotional and physical scars and acknowledge in some small part the loss of many. This monument is our simple way to say 'we will never forget your sacrifice.'"

The  was completely funded through donations and the PBA, was designed by local business  where the 16-foot long steel I-beam runs vertically to display the cut out cross outside of 

The cross, which was not made for any religious significance, was created when workers at Ground Zero were removing the beams and cut out a cross for each victim's family.

"Sept. 11 had a direct impact on the community as River Edge lost friends, neighbors, family members," Police Chief Thomas Cariddi said. "River Edge dedicates this memorial to remember the over 400 first responders who made the ultimate sacrifice in 2001 and further remember those that give each and every day."

While the First Responder's Memorial is intended as a quiet space to honor all police, fire and EMS volunteers, the families of Jennifer FialkoTodd OuidaScott RohnerChristopher Allingham and Bon Seok Koo will continue to quietly remember their loved ones at the Sept. 11 Memorial Gardens outside of the . 

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Michael Barry September 12, 2012 at 04:14 PM
I'd like to take this opportunity to commend River Edge PBA President Joe Starost, members of the River Edge Police Department, Let It Grow, the River Edge Department of Public Works and all the others who assisted in bringing some of our WTC steel to River Edge for this 9/11 memorial. The Port Authority Police Department lost 37 members of the service that day, including Explosive Detection Team (EDT) K-9, Sirius, a Labrador Retriever. The Port Authority Police Department holds the dubious distinction of being the only police department in America to have lost so many officers in a single incident, in a single day; a title we wish we never earned. Eleven years later the pain is still as significant as it was in the aftermath of the attack so when some tell us to "move on" or "get over it," it's refreshing to know that River Edge is a special community that will "Never Forget." The right shoulder patch of my uniform bears a likeness of the twin towers with the number "37" superimposed beneath the American flag. We wear it proudly and I am also proud to be a River Edge resident. This is a remarkable community made up of some very good and honorable people who have demonstrated their commitment to the memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice. On behalf of the fallen, for those who cannot speak for themselves, I sincerely thank you. Sergeant Michael P. Barry # 195 Port Authority of NY & NJ Police Department PATH Command

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