They're Helping to Rebuild
PAULA BERRY, 9/11 WIDOW AND DESIGN JURY MEMBER; JOE DANIELS, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE NATIONAL SEPTEMBER 11 MEMORIAL AND MUSEUM
Daniels, 39: I was at the World Trade Center on 9/11. I saw the south tower collapsing. I wanted to do something to help. It's been a painstaking process. But I'm so proud of what we've built. The memorial will be a place of remembrance and an opportunity to bring people together.
Berry, 54: My husband [and father of their three young sons], David, died in the south tower. After my life had fallen apart, I felt a need to be part of something larger than myself. It was important to us that the memorial mark the void that was left when the towers collapsed. By holding on to what was there, the story will always be told.
He Nurtured a Tree Back to Life
RICHARD CABO, DIRECTOR OF THE ARTHUR ROSS CITYWIDE NURSERY
Cabo, 53: I had just started working at the Parks Department on Sept. 11 when they brought the "Survivor Tree" to the Citywide Nursery. During the cleanup at Ground Zero, someone noticed a branch in the rubble of bricks, metal and glass. When they brought it here, it was just a stump except for one branch with a few leaves, and there were still ashes where there used to be the crown of a Callery pear tree. I thought it would never make it. I helped nurse it back to life. We stabilized it, pruned it, fertilized it and gave it water, but at a certain point, the tree took care of itself. I was honored to be there when the tree was returned to the memorial site last December. It now stands over 30 ft. tall and flowers in the spring. It really symbolizes the recovery of America, the way the country, and the city in particular, bounced back.
She Protects the Memorial
CAPTAIN GLORIA FRANK, PORT AUTHORITY POLICE WORLD TRADE CENTER
Frank, 44: I was assigned to work at Kennedy Airport on 9/11. But the night before, I asked to take the day off. I was driving in Brooklyn when I saw the second plane actually striking the tower. Everything froze. I froze, traffic froze. Sirens were everywhere, and the first thing I thought of was my coworkers who were down there. I lost my mentor Captain Kathy Mazza on Sept. 11. Now I am the commanding officer of the World Trade Center site, overseeing security and the day-to-day operations. I feel honored to be part of history.
He Saves Memories
MARK WAGNER, A LEAD ARCHITECT FOR THE 9/11 MEMORIAL MUSEUM
Wagner, 42: When I was asked to see what was left of the World Trade Center site, I considered it an honor. I'm a born-and-bred New Yorker, and I wanted to do something to help. As I sifted through the rubble, I could see there were important artifacts that should be preserved. There were large pieces of twisted steel and crushed fire trucks, eyeglasses and newspapers. We collected more than 2,000 artifacts. Some of the pieces are so horrible that people will see them and say, "Never again." We are not going to forget what happened, and we are not going to let it happen again.
THE TIME WARNER FOUNDATION, WHICH IS AFFILIATED WITH PEOPLE'S PARENT COMPANY, IS A DONOR TO THE NATIONAL SEPTEMBER 11 MEMORIAL & MUSEUM. TO RESERVE A FREE PASS TO THE MEMORIAL, GO TO 911MEMORIAL.ORG.
He Keeps the Story Alive
MICKEY KROSS, RETIRED FIREFIGHTER
Kross, 64: I was sitting at my desk in the firehouse drinking coffee when we got called down to the north tower after the plane hit. We were trapped for three hours, but Engine 16, my company, lost no one-we all survived. I donated my helmet and the flashlight I was carrying to the museum. Before I retired I was a lieutenant; now I go to all these events to speak to schoolkids and union workers. I want them to remember what happened here and what happened to a lot of friends of mine who gave their lives.