9/11 Memorial officially open to the public in Swanton

    The 9/11 Memorial in Swanton features actual granite from the crash sites (WNWO).

    The Northwest Ohio 9/11 Memorial was finished with its construction on September 11th, 2017, but because it is inside the Ohio National Air Guard's 180th Fighter Wing Military Base, it had to pass the necessary security requirements.

    Now, it's open to the public.

    Just over 17 years ago, thousands of lives were lost as a result of terrorist attacks at three different locations in the United States.

    Retired Colonel Scott Reed remembered the events of the day and explained it to a small group on Tuesday.

    "I just love the idea of being a part of such a professional team that day."

    Col. Reed showed off the Northwest Ohio 9/11 Memorial in Swanton, which is now officially available for tours.

    It features a representation of the Pentagon, Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and the World Trade Center buildings. The setup is a sundial, and the times of those attacks are displayed.

    One of the most jaw dropping aspects of the memorial is the detail within the granite that comes from the crash sites. You will see stars of different colors, with each one representing a police officer, EMT, fireman, military member, or civilian.

    "Everyone is individual, everyone represents a life lost that day. They are a tribute to Toledo being the Glass City, but more so, a tribute to the people who really were heroes that day."

    Pauline Glaza was a big part of the construction of the memorial. She's the former executive director of Toledo Regional Architects, Contractors, & Engineers, the organization that oversaw its construction.

    9/11 was a day she'll never forget, her tenth birthday.

    Glaza's daughter remembers the incident vividly, but many children today weren't even alive for it.

    "My hope is that we're bringing kids out there. I tell people, next year, there will be high school seniors who weren't born yet when it happened. Let's get them out here and let's teach them their history," said Col. Reed.

    One member of the audience Tuesday only knows of 9/11 through stories, as Jackson Maassel is only a Sophomore at Cardinal Stritch.

    "Our family has talked about it a lot. My mom gets emotional about it very easily."

    Because it's on the military base, you have to schedule a tour.

    You can do that here.

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