MOUND (WCCO) — A memorial at Veteran’s Park in Mound is being preparing to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy.
Bill Anderson established the 9/11 memorial, which was one of the first erected in the country, with help from his colleagues at the VFW Post.
“I thought about it. This would be a good idea to have a monument to dedicate what transpired that day,” said Anderson, who’s the Past VFW Post 5113 Commander and a war veteran himself from the Korean War.
The memorial, made of two vertical slabs of granite, depicts the World Trade Center with the American flag behind it.
“We did it. We’re proud of it,” he said. “I think what makes it special is that it’s here in Mound.”
Anderson fondly remembers the day the memorial was dedicated. Nearly nine years ago, city and national leaders, along with the family of Tom Burnett who died on the Pennsylvania plane, were there.
“Oh, it was quite a day here, really,” he said. “It was very well attended, and we walked away at the end of the day thinking we did the right thing.”
The need for remembrance is what drove Anderson to erect the memorial. He said he was trying to teach students several years ago about Pearl Harbor, but they knew little about it, and he said that bothered him. He didn’t want the same sentiment for 9/11, so the idea to bring a permanent memorial to Mound made sense.
“I thought, ‘well, it’s up to the VFW to be sure they don’t forget, because we are here as teachers of Americanism, past wars and that. It’s our responsibility,'” he said. “I don’t think it should be forgotten, whether it’s one year, two years, 10 years or 20 years.”
Sunday will mark a decade since the tragedy. With the “tolling of the bell ceremony,” Mound firefighters will remember fallen New York City firefighters and other first responders who died that day.
“We have made a commitment to never forget those members and our brothers who passed that day. It’s very significant for us,” said Mound Fire Chief Greg Pederson. “Our heart goes out to their families today still.”
The ceremony will happen at 11:30 a.m. in Veteran’s Park on Sunday, Sept. 11.