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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – There is a new place to honor those who died or became sick in the aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks.
The 9/11 Memorial Glade, which opened in May, is a pathway near the 9/11 Memorial and Museum.
Six heavy blocks of stone, called monoliths, look up to the sky, symbolizing resilience. It’s a sacred place for 9/11 responders and survivors, like Chris Kapp.
“It really feels like home, because I’ve dedicated my life to paying it forward,” she told CBS2’s Lisa Rozner.
Web Extra: Architect Speaks About 9/11 Memorial Glade On CBSN New York
The 9/11 Memorial Glade is an outdoor plaza of sorts with trees and grass, hence the term “glade.” It’s dedicated to those whose selfless actions on 9/11 led to their injury, sickness and death.
People like Kapp, who at 21 years old, set up a mobile kitchen and first aid station with the Salvation Army within hours of the attacks.
“We would help them wash their eyes out when the would come off the pile with soot in their eyes,” she said. “So we were in that cloud, we were breathing in toxic everything.”
The Glade was dedicated in May – exactly 17 years after the end of the recovery effort at the site. Steel from the World Trade Center is woven into each 15-ton slab, representing scars.
“These stones are sort of, you know, they’re battered and rough but they’re not broken,” architect Michael Arad told CBSN New York on Tuesday.
There aren’t any names included on the memorial, because the list is constantly changing as more people get sick.
Former New York Gov. George Pataki was in office on 9/11 and remembers the area was a primary ramp for access to rescue and recovery efforts.
“Bodies were carried up this ramp, covered in the American flag,” he said.
The path leads to the 9/11 Survivor Tree, even touching visitors.
“We knew that a lot of people died here, but we didn’t know that a lot of responders died here,” said Matheus Moreira.
“There are more of us dying every day. So knowing that there’s going to be something about us when we’re gone is so important,” said Kapp.
It’s a place to remember and now a place to heal.