Friday, September 9, 2011

Remembering September 11th

September 11th has always been difficult to remember or to write about.  My husband lost a dear friend, and a co-worker that day. His company lost three employees on September 11th.   Many people in Southern New Hampshire and nearby Massachusetts communities were on flights that were hi-jacked out of Boston.  The air traffic controllers in nearby Nashua heard about the hi-jacking before the planes hit the towers in New York, and listened in horror as events unfolded.  It has been difficult to find anything uplifting in the aftermath of the disaster.  But time does heal wounds, and in the ten years since 11 September 2001 the communities in our area have come to terms with the sadness and shock.  There are many somber, but positive and patriotic activities planned for the 10th anniversary.

Here are a few stories and photos of September 11th memorials in our area:

Londonderry Common, September 11th Memorial
This memorial is on Londonderry Common, showing a dove of peace rising from the ruins of the World Trade Center in New York City.   The Londonderry American Legion Post 27 will be sponsoring a ceremony at this spot on Sunday, September 11th, 2011 at 4 PM for about an hour.  There is also a Peace Pole on Mack's Apple's property off Pillsbury Road, dedicated by the Girl Scouts of Londonderry on September 11th, 2006.  It is six sided, with the words "May Peace Prevail on Earth" written in six languages.  It is the site of an annual ceremony and bonfire every September 11th.  or 

Close to Londonderry there is also a memorial to September 11th at Benson Park in Hudson, New Hampshire.  This spot is located on the land that was previously known as Benson's Wild Animal Park, on Kimball Hill Road.  In nearby Dracut, Massachusetts are two memorials to Captain John Ogonowski, who was a resident of Dracut and Captain of Flight 11.

September 11th Memorial at Boston Public Garden

Chuck Jones's name is inscribed here

A flower lei laid in remembrance of the fallen
This memorial is located in Boston's famous Public Garden, near Arlington Street and the iconic Swan Boats.  It lists the people lost from the Boston Area, including Col. Chuck Jones, my husband's friend and co-worker, who was on Flight 11.  He lived in Bedford, Massachusetts and worked in Merrimack, New Hampshire.    There is also a memorial at Boston's Logan Airport to the victims of American Airlines Flight 11 and United Flight 175.

There is also a Memorial Labyrinth dedicated to the 22 Boston College alumni who lost their lives on September 11th.  It is a copy of the labyrinth at the Chartres Cathedral, France, and is located on the Campus of Boston College in Newton, Massachusetts.

Linda George, buried in Holden, Massachusetts
Most poignant to me is this simple gravestone.  It is right next to my Dad's gravestone in Holden, Massachusetts.  He died in 2002.  This gravestone is very simple, but always neatly tended and nearly always has an American flag.  It is the gravestone of Linda George, age 27 and engaged to be married, one of the seven TJ Maxx Corporation employees who were also on Flight 11.  Her family lived in Holden.  There is a memorial garden to the seven TJX employees in Framingham, Massachusetts, you can see it at this link

Our wonderful state of New Hampshire has come up with a gentle way of remembering September 11th that is very emblematic of the Granite State.  One of the wonders of our geography is 48 mountains that reach to 4,000 feet or higher.  Since we are a state that sits at sea level (all 18 miles of our coastline!) that is a curious thing to have such high mountains. "Peak-bagging" is a hobby for many Granite Staters, and they make it a lifetime effort to scale all 48 of these peaks.

On the day after September 11, 2001 a group of hikers raised an extra large flag on Mount Liberty in remembrance of the disaster.  The event spread, with more hikers participating on more New Hampshire peaks the following September 11th.   Now, on the 10th anniversary of this event, thousands have signed up to fly flags from all 48 of the 4,000 footers.  Even non-hikers and the handicapped can join in since there are chair lifts, roads or a train to at least three of the peaks (Wildcat, Cannon, and Mount Washington).  If you would like to participate you can check out the website, or email

This photo was found on Picasa
by "James" taken on 11 Sept 2010 on Mount Bondcliff, 4265 feet above sea level
This is a link to a story about the 4,000 footer flag raisings from the Union Leader, Newspaper of Concord, NH

Thanks for all the love rising from the rubble...


Copyright 2011, Heather Wilkinson Rojo


  1. Nice post Heather, thanks for doing it.

  2. I feel badly for the families who will relive this tragedy again.. some of the clips on television of the planes hitting the towers is terrible to see once again.


  3. Thanks Heather. What a difficult topic to write on, still, but what a nice post!

  4. Heather,

    Thanks for posting all the lovely memorials. As time goes by it is important that we keep these memories for the next generations. Prayers for all the families today!

  5. Heather, it's such a comfort to know that these people are remembered by the entire town through very touching memorials. Thank you for this post.