Posted at: 09/09/2012 8:25 PM
By: Dan Levy
SARATOGA SPRINGS - It took about a year longer than most people had hoped, but the controversial 911 Memorial has finally been dedicated at High Rock Park in Saratoga Springs.
The significance of the statue's placement and dedication was apparent to all who attended the dedication ceremony Sunday afternoon.
"This is a proud moment in the history of Saratoga Springs," said Mayor Scott Johnson, "As a community we are many things but often times we are role models for much of the rest of the country."
Even though people were glad to see the statue in place for the upcoming 11th anniversary of the 9-11 attacks, many people are still troubled that it wasn't in place in time for the 10th anniversary last year.
The artwork became a political football in the Saratoga community when initially no one could agree where to put it.
"I felt that we had missed our moment," said John Van Alstine, one of the two artists who created the 24 foot high sculpture using steel beams from the World Trade Center.
"We're looking back and honoring and remembering but we're also looking forward and looking up," Van Alstine said, "We hope that it is a heeling experience for people to come and view it and spend time with it."
"Let our memory of what occurred remind us of how we face the wolrd together as a nation," said Noah Savett, the other artist who worked along with Van Alstine. "Let us not that the steel consecrated (Sunday) isn't only twisted in grief, it also serves into the sky."
"911 means may things to many people," Mayor Johnson said, "It evokes strong emotions, rightly so, and in tragedy often comes a resolve to overcome adversity."
The mayor says he thinks, in the long run, the controversy will be forgotten.