On September 11, 2001, four commercial airliners were hijacked in a planned attack against the United States. Two airliners were flown into the World Trade Center Twin Towers and a third aircraft into the Pentagon. A fourth aircraft, United Airlines Flight 93, crashed into an open field in the Laurel Highlands near the small town of Shanksville, after the passengers and crew stormed the cockpit to derail the plane from its intended target, Washington, D.C.
Established by President George W. Bush in September 2002, the Flight 93 National Memorial is a serene place of remembrance and honor. Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the Visitor Center, which houses a chronological display of the day’s events with artifacts from the crash, flight paths and information about the flight and its passengers. Near the Memorial Plaza stands The Wall of Names, a white marble wall positioned on the flight path and engraved with each hero’s name. But the memorial isn’t complete yet.
The final phase of the memorial, the Tower of Voices, will be unveiled in September 2018. At 93 feet tall, the tower will act as a living memorial, representing the eternal voices of the 40 passengers and crew members, containing 40 uniquely pitched wind chimes that will vary in sizes of 10, 8 and 6 feet. Visitors to the memorial will be able to see the Tower of Voices from Route 30 upon arrival.
Whether your visit serves as a pilgrimage, a patriotic rite of passage or a historical and educational experience, one thing is for certain, the Flight 93 National Memorial is incredibly thought-provoking and emotionally powerful.
The park is open between sunrise and sunset. Public restrooms are located adjacent to the Flight 93 National Memorial Learning Center. No tickets are required to access to the Memorial Plaza.
The Visitor Center is a free self-guided experience, open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Inside the Visitor Center, you can find the Flight 93 National Memorial book store. Please note that there are no restrooms available inside the Visitor Center.
For directions, contact information, and to learn more about events and activities at Flight 93 National Memorial, visit www.nps.gov/flni or call (814) 893-6322.
There are two walking trails available for visitors: the 1.7-mile Allee walkway, which takes visitors over the wetlands bridge and down to the Memorial Plaza, and a shorter .7-mile switchback trail from the Wall of Names to the Visitor Center Complex.
The National Park Service, along with the Families of Flight 93, Friends of Flight 93 National Memorial and the National Park Foundation, will host the dedication ceremony for the Tower of Voices.
The Tower of Voices is a 93-foot tall concrete memorial that will serve as a landmark for Flight 93 National Memorial from the highway, marking the gateway to the park. Set among a ring of trees, the 93-foot tall tower will feature 40 wind chimes, whose sound will resonate throughout the memorial to honor each of the passengers and crew members.
The tower with serve as both a visual and audible reminder of the heroism of the forty passengers and crew members of United Flight 93. The chimes create tones that convey, through harmony and discord, both the serenity of the site and the tragic event on September 11, 2001.
Please join the Friends of Flight 93, National Park Service, Families of Flight 93 and National Park Foundation for the Seventeeth Observance of September 11, 2001. The public is welcome to gather in remembrance and honor of the forty passengers and crew members of Flight 93, as well as all who gave their lives seventeen years ago on September 11, 2001.
The annual Observance will be held at the Memorial Plaza. This open air, rain-or-shine service will include brief remarks, special music, reading of the names of the forty passengers and crew members of Flight 93 and ringing of the Bells of Remembrance.
No backpacks or large bags are permitted. Limited seating will be available for the approximately hour-long ceremony, although guests are permitted to bring their own chairs. The memorial will open at 7 a.m.; visitors should arrive early to allow ample time for the shuttle ride from the parking area to the Memorial Plaza. The Visitor Center will not be open on September 11 until noon.
The 4th Annual Walk 93 will be held on Sept. 22, 2018 at the Flight 93 National Memorial. Participants will take an educational guided journey, led by a ranger, down the 2.28 Alleé Walkway, over the Wetlands Bridge and come to a finish at the Western Overlook Trail. All proceeds will be used to fund a new picnic pavilion area at Flight 93 in 2019. To learn more and sign up, visit www.Flight93Friends.org/walk-93.