By Rod Williamson Vanderbilt University Quick Slant
On a recent trip to New York City, we spent the better part of a morning at Ground Zero, now called the 9/11 Memorial [sic]. We hadn’t been to the site for a couple of years and it remains a sobering experience. There is a small, modest museum [the Tribute Center] across the street and what it lacks in size and elaborate presentation (a new museum is being built), it more than makes up in emotion. Tears are still being shed. One of the [Tribute Center’s] walls lists the 3,000-some victims of that horrific day, including that of Mark Hindy, Vanderbilt 1995 graduate and a pitcher on our baseball team who worked for Cantor-Fitzgerald [sic] in World Trade Center North. Across the street in the exact footprints of the twin towers are two reflecting pools amidst a park-like 400 trees that one day will each grow to 60-feet tall.
These square pools have 30-foot deep granite walls, over which 26,000 gallons of water flow per minute, setting a soothing and appropriate ambiance. The pools are lined with a railing that denotes the name of each victim, including those on the four airline flights and at the Pentagon. Hindy’s name is found on the south end of the North Tower pool.
The reflecting pool site was crowded on this weekday morning as it must be every morning, a long line patiently waiting its turn to pay its respects. It is noteworthy that the visitors are very diverse in race, age, nationality, gender and, in all probability, faith. The attack on America was felt by the entire world.
We will not attempt to convey our emotions or further describe this sacred place. Words fail us. But we will suggest that you send a good thought to the memory of Mark Hindy, a man who would be 40 years old July 20 had not his wonderful life been tragically cut short on an otherwise ordinary September day nearly 12 years ago.