FORT WORTH, Texas — Nearly two decades ago, the U.S. changed forever when thousands of lives were lost in the 9/11 attacks. It’s a moment in history Americans will never forget.
The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is making sure to preserve that memory 20 years later with an exhibit on display that helps visitors understand the enormity.
A beam that once stood on the 101st floor of the World Trade Center’s North Tower will be the first thing visitors see when they walk through the entrance.
“You can really kind of get a sense of the violence of the impact that took down the tower,” said Dr. Morgan Rhenberg, the chief scientist at the museum. “You kind of flashback to that and think about where you were and what you were feeling then.”
Rehnberg wanted this 9/11 tribute to show a different perspective.
“To kind of let the beam share its story and speak for itself helps translate the power of what happened,” he explained.
Nearby, there is a monitor where the beam writes where it was, what time American Airlines Flight 11 hit it, and when it fell.
“We were all shell-shocked, we were all worried, scared, you know the fear of unknown of what’s going on, you know our country’s under attack. But the fact that we came together, and how much our country can learn from that,” Michael Glynn, Fort Worth's fire captain, explained of the day 20 years ago.
For Glynn, this is his first time seeing the beam. Twenty years later, he is commemorating his brothers and first responders who worked tirelessly to save lives.
“I don’t even want to try to put into words what must’ve been going through their minds, but they kept pushing up. They kept climbing,” Glynn said.
The exhibit showcases a flag with pictures of the victims. It’s a way to remember those whose lives were lost and the ripple effect of changes our nation would see over these past 20 years.
“What’s really starting to hit me is we’ve got children that weren’t born when this happened. We're starting to hiring firefighters that weren't born,” Glynn said.
The tribute will not only pass along the history for generations; it also has a message for those who come face to face with this piece of history.
“We’re still strong, we’re still together,” Glynn explained.
In the beam’s own words, “I am bent, but not broken. I am still here."
For more information on the exhibit and how you can see it, visit https://www.fwmuseum.org/.