CORAL SPRINGS (CBSMiami) – A project conceived seven years ago is now a traveling memorial to the thousands who died in the September 11th attacks 17 years ago.
Tuesday, the 9/11 Never Forget Mobile Exhibit went on display at 2601 Coral Springs Drive in Coral Springs.
Launched in 2013 by the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, the exhibit, which is housed in a 1,000 square foot trailer, is a tribute and educational tool that travels across the country. Students from middle and high schools in Coral Springs and Parkland will be visiting the exhibit during pre-arranged field trips during its two-day stay.
“A lot of people may not get a chance to go to New York to see the museum,” said John Labarbara.
Labarbara, a retired New York City firefighter, was one of the first responders the day of the attacks. He travels with the exhibit to give visitors a first-hand account of the day that will never be forgotten.
“We talk about what happened on 9/11, we have the timeline of the planes, when they struck and when the towers came down,” he said.
In the exhibit, visitors can see real pieces from “ground zero,” rubble and twisted metal from what was once part of the World Trade Center.
“I lost a son on this day 17 years ago who happened to be a super, super kid,” said Buzz Smith.
For Buzz Smith, it will always be an excruciating memory but one that he chooses to honor every year. His son Jeff, a consultant, was working on the 104th floor of the South Tower when a plane hit.
“When I turned on the TV, saw it crash into the South Tower, I knew he was dead,” said Smith.
One of the initiatives of the exhibit is to preserve the memory and actions of those who lost their lives on that day.
“It’s very important that the word gets out there and the story is told and never forget what happened that day,” said Labarbara.
The exhibit is open to the public on September 11 from 2-8 p.m. and September 12 from 4-8 p.m. Due to high interest in the event, attendees are required to pre-select their free tickets at csneverforget.eventbrite.com.