By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (AW) Maebel Ysog Tinoko, Navy Public Affairs Support Element Detachment Northwest
SILVERDALE, Wash. (NNS) -- Sailors and Marines at military installations in the Pacific Northwest helped the Kitsap County 9/11 Memorial Committee welcome two steel beams from the World Trade Center during a ceremony at the Kitsap Mall Aug. 22.
The steel beams are scheduled to be incorporated into a 9/11 hero's memorial in Kitsap County.
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey officials and the Families of September 11th awarded Central Kitsap Fire and Rescue the honor of receiving the two steel I-beams from the former World Trade Center in New York City.
Sailors, Marines and local firefighters lined up to welcome the steel beams, which were escorted by more than 500 Patriot Guard Riders, a group of motorcycle enthusiasts who volunteered to accompany the steel beams from the Washington-Idaho line to its final destination.
"9/11 means a lot to us, and the steel beams have a deep personal meaning to each of us," said Commander Submarine Group 9 Command Master Chief (SS) Rick Atkins. "This steel represents a pivotal moment that has affected us all today and every day. It is a tribute to the lives lost and to those who continue to make the ultimate sacrifice."
The Kitsap 9/11 Memorial is scheduled to be completed by Sept. 11, 2011 at which time a 10-year remembrance service is scheduled.
Sailors assigned to Naval Hospital Bremerton (NHB) had the honor of folding the American flag used to cover the steel beams.
"I love being part of this," said NHB Color Guard Team member Yeomen Seaman Jasmine Stewart. "I joined the Navy in 2006 on 9/11 so it means a lot to me. It touches my heart to be able to be part of this special event. The memorial will give people hope, and it builds cohesiveness for our nation and our community."