NEW YORK, N.Y. — The National September 11 Memorial & Museum is the final resting place for Anthony Gardner’s brother, Harvey, and 40% of victims in the World Trade Center attack.
“You know, it's hard to believe that 20 years have passed. My brother Harvey was just 35 years old when he was killed on 9/11. Twenty years passage of time — he's still very much an inspiration for us. He's part of our lives,” Gardner said.
Ticket sales to visit the 9/11 site plummeted by nearly $45 million during the pandemic.
In conjunction with the 20th anniversary of the attacks, there are new fundraising efforts and a national campaign encouraging reflection and action.
One PSA features a young girl whose grandfather died in the attacks, drawing attention to generations who have no memory of that day.
The museum's president, Alice Greenwald, said remembering how America reacted to the attacks is equally as important as teaching the history.
“The response was profound compassion born of shared grief,” said Greenwald. “It was empathy. It was a sense that we were in this together. It was the coming together, people who hugged strangers on the street, just because. They knew everyone was feeling the same pain and shock and grief. It was a moment where hope was palpable in the face of adversity, where we understood that we would be resilient, we would rebuild, and we would remember.”
The goal is to bring back more visitors to the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.
There's also a 20th anniversary commemorative ticket for sale to benefit The Never Forget Fund, so more people can learn about those lost.
“People like my brother who all they can do was try to comfort their coworkers, they knew they weren't going to be able to get out of their offices and so in that final time, they showed each other compassion,” Gardner said.
You can learn more about the 20th anniversary efforts here.