By Roseanne Colletti NBC 4 New York
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The birthdays of 9/11 victims are being commemorated by the September 11 memorial, which has quietly begun a new program to place roses in their names etched on the Lower Manhattan landmark.
The effort to remember the nearly 3,000 victims on their birthdays began this week.
The idea came from staff and volunteers as they thought of more ways to personalize the memorial for each of the victims, said Anthony Guido, communications manager at the September 11 Memorial and Museum.
Each day before the memorial opens to the general public, the staff places a white rose on top of the name of each victim who has a birthday.
There’s at least one birthday for every day of the year, and six on September 11 itself. The victims of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing will also have the same honor.
Guido said there was no significance to the white color of the flowers, and the staff simply wanted to make it uniform.
Maria DeBruin, whose mother, Louise A. Lynch, worked for Marsh & McLennan in the World Trade Center, applauded the effort as “a beautiful thing to do for the victims.”
She said she particularly appreciated the effort if she couldn’t get to the memorial on her mother’s birthday, June 3, to place a flower herself.
“At least ill know that everyone visiting the memorial on that day will be thinking of her like I am,” DeBruin wrote on the National September 11 Memorial & Museum Facebook page.
Tourist Bill Dobert was moved by the sight of the flowers.
“It’s very gripping. It’s very easy to get emotional over something like this,” he said.
Guido said the birthday roses cost $2,500 a year, an expense that’s built into the memorial’s budget.