New York City – September 9-11, 2015
In New York we gathers Patriotic hand impressions for artwork of the century! We had the honor and privilege to visit New York during the anniversary of 9/11. We started our New York trip by adding several hand impressions from local Patriotic citizens.
We wondered how the trip would turn out. The weight of 9/11 and our busy schedule began to make us nervous. The trip took a surreal turn as we visited the 9/11 Tribute Center at Ground Zero.
We began our visit with Lee Ielpi, Director of the Tribute Center as well as some families and first responders. We were speechless as several family members added their hand impression to the Flag for Hope and recorded their videos. One such video is placed below from Julie Sweeney Roth. The pictures
and videos we took seemed to offer little solace to the heartbreak that we listened to that day. One child thanked a father that they hadn’t met for a life they had yet to live. We would be remiss if we did not relate the full scope of feelings we felt that day.
Julie Sweeney Roth whose husband left a voice mail just before the second plane crashed into the World Trade Center offered perspective and you can view the video below from our YouTube page. Julie inspired us to look at the positive and enjoy what we have every day. Hope was the recurring theme during this trip; Hope that one day we can put aside our differences and work together in Unity towards a worthwhile project.
While in New York we were also honored to visit a true American Hero. Mr. Jack Pritchard is a retired fireman and has been twice awarded the James Gordon Bennett Medal for actions above and beyond the call of duty. Jack Pritchard retired from the force on December 31, 2008 with the rank of Battalion Chief, when the 40-year veteran hung up his boots to spend time with his family. His colleagues recalled that he didn’t give a big acceptance speech, he just said, “It’s a real honor to be a firefighter,” and walked back to his seat. We were able to take some great pictures of Jack and his family who participated in adding a new Star to the Flag for Hope!
Next we went to visit the New York Giants Football team where we met with Co-Owner John K. Mara, Head Coach Tom Coughlin and Linebacker Jon Beason.
Thank you to the New York Giants organization for the hospitality and for making us feel at home in the Stadium. The New York Giants are one of the original 6 teams in the NFL and are one of the only original teams still in existence. During this trip we were honored to have John Mara as one of the Stars on the Flag for Hope. We are thrilled to have you participate and accept the Star John! You are a welcome addition to the Flag for Hope!
As we near completion of our Flag for Hope Project on 11/11 in Washington, DC, we are thoroughly enjoying our time creating the Flag! We hope that you are enjoying witnessing the building of this one-of-a-kind piece of art. New York capped off a great flurry of activity!
What a great trip for the Flag for Hope field team and we can’t wait to gear up for our next city!