9/11 Memorial officials skipped Ground Zero ceremony to lobby for funding
For several hours Friday, the names of 9/11 victims — including the 749 from New Jersey who died — were read in the annual, solemn ceremony at Ground Zero.
But at the same time, 9/11 Memorial officials were in Washington D.C., lobbying for $25 million a year, the New York Post reports. There were no pauses in the sparsely attended hearing at the times when hijacked planes had crashed on Sept. 11, 2001, or when the Twin Towers fell.
The report quotes several families of 9/11 victims who called the move disgraceful, including retired FDNY Chief Jim Riches, whose firefighter son Jimmy died in the attacks: “This is all about them making money. They’ve turned it into a revenue-generating tourist attraction.”
But 9/11 Memorial board member Debra Burlingame, one of the four people who testified Friday, said it was appropriate on 9/11 to make sure funding is in place to help remember the attacks' victims: “I don’t find that disrespectful at all.”
Louis C. Hochman is digital managing editor for NJ1015.com. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @LouisCHochman.