CRESCENT SPRINGS, Ky. — The Northern Kentucky 9/11 Memorial was the work of a community — firefighters, artists and ironworkers — determined to pay tribute to the lives lost more than 600 miles away.
It was a personal mission for Crescent Springs fire Chief Jeff Wendt, who wanted to ensure that the tragedy felt real even in Kentucky, even for a memorial dedicated 14 years after the 9/11 attacks.
“I wanted to give our community something people could touch,” he said.
So he applied for and received the centerpiece: A section of steel salvaged from the Ground Zero rubble pile.
Ironworkers from Local 44 used their skills to help build the rest — a base that honors and explains the tragedy and two columns representing the Twin Towers — in honor of the ironworkers who helped rescuers at the World Trade Center site in 2001.
“Humbling,” said David Baker, one of the local ironworkers who helped with the project. “It’s humbling.”
And it means everything to people like Mick Burke, whose nephew Brian Patrick Williams — a Covington Catholic graduate — died at the World Trade Center that day.
“It was so well done, and he was part of that story that day for this community,” Burke said.
He and all of the people involved hope the memorial will stand as a symbol of remembrance and a reminder for future generations to recognize the tragedy and courage that defines the 9/11 story.