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Flight 93 Memorial Campaign Raises $40M

The Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, Pa. will honor the 40 crash victims of United Flight 93 on the 12th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

Events begin 3 p.m. Tuesday as crews break ground on a visitor center. The 6,800 square-foot facility will try to tell the full story of Flight 93 and the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11. The building is expected to be completed September 2015. The Flight 93 National Memorial Capital Campaign announced it raised $40 million dollars to complete the national memorial.

On Tuesday evening, family and friends of the crash victims will place 40 candle lanterns along the Wall of Names as part of the luminaria program. The vigil will act as a silent tribute to the passengers and crew who lost their lives on Flight 93, Superintendent Jeff Reinbold said.

“It’s an incredibly dramatic evening and a great and powerful vigil leading into the morning of the 11th,” he said.

Reinbold said the Sept. 11 memorial will look familiar to those who’ve seen it in the past.

“Visitors will see a lot of the traditions that they’ve come to know and expect,” he said. “We will have family members reading the names of each of the 40 passengers and crew from Flight 93.”

The ceremony will begin at 10:03 a.m., the time of the crash. As each name is read, remembrance bells will be rung by the commander and the crew of the USS Somerset. The ship, christened July last year, was built using metal harvested from the Flight 93 crash site. The United States Navy Band, the Sea Chanters will provide the music for the event.

All events are free and open to the public, and more information on memorial events is available online. Those interested in attending the Sept. 11 memorial are encouraged to arrive by 9 a.m. Seating will not be available for the roughly 40-minute ceremony.

More than 317,000 people visited the memorial last year and more than 500,000 people have come to see the memorial since its dedication in 2011.

The Erie, PA native has been a fellow in the WESA news department since May 2013. Having earned a bachelor's degree in print journalism from Duquesne University, he is now pursuing an M.A. in multi-media management. Michael describes his career aspiration as "I want to do it all in journalism."