Dedicated to Improving the Lives of Blind and Visually Impaired People

Observing Patriot Day and Remembering September 11, 2001

by B. E. Lewis, RDPFS Intern:

Since today is September 11th, this inaugural Monday Bulletin begins with a moment of reflection to honor the lives of those who lost their lives that day in 2001. Now observed as Patriot Day each year, the anniversary commemorates the events that occurred as a result of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Virginia as well as the hijacked plane that crashed in Pennsylvania. A joint resolution of the U.S. Congress on December 18, 2001 designated September 11th as Patriot Day. The resolution calls for the President of the United States to issue a yearly proclamation requesting that all U.S. flags be flown at half-staff. The first Patriot Day was commemorated in 2002 and has been recognized each subsequent year. Last year, the White House Proclamation from President Joseph Biden stated that: “On this Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance, we pay tribute to the heroes and victims who lost their lives on September 11, and we recommit ourselves to the spirit of unity, patriotism, and service that carried our Nation through in the days that followed.”
To find out more information about the holiday, visit the Britannica webpage on Patriot Day.  For the full White House statement from last year, read A Proclamation on Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance, 2022.

The September 11th Memorial: An Accessible In-Person and Virtual Museum

Today, a National Memorial and Museum exists on the grounds of the former World Trade Center site. It is the “country’s principal institution concerned with exploring 9/11, documenting its impact, and examining its continuing significance.” It honors the lives lost in 2001 as well as during the attacks on the World Trade Center in 1993. The main memorial contains two pools of water to indicate the two fallen towers. According to the memorial’s website, the design of the bronze names parapets surrounding the twin pools allows visitors to discover the names of the victims by touching the contours of the letters. Affiliations included on the Memorial, such as company or flight names, are embossed, while the names of individual victims are cut out of the bronze. The memorial and museum are accessible for both in-person and virtual participation. The 9/11 Memorial and Museum seeks to ensure access for all visitors and to provide an equal opportunity for every individual to participate in their mission. Guide dogs are welcome. Their audio guide features an audio description tour, allowing visitors who are blind or have low vision to explore the Museum independently through detailed descriptions of the exhibitions. The audio guide is VoiceOver compatible on all iOS devices, including devices provided by the Museum. For those who cannot visit in person, the Museum offers online resources. These include such features as:
– an Interactive Museum Experience, where virtual visitors can explore and select different paths through the Museum’s many spaces and exhibitions;
Activities at Home that offer simple, collaborative activities with instructions to create artwork from materials that are generally found at home; and
– an Anniversary in the Schools Webinar, an interactive program connecting participants with Museum staff and guest speakers to learn more about the attacks and the commemoration.
For details and additional online offerings, visit the Museum webpage describing how to Learn and Explore from Home. And learn more here about their general policies on Accessibility.