WEST BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) - The West Bloomfield Township fire department will unveil its new 9-11 display on the 10th anniversary of the attacks.
Since 2010, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has been distributing artifacts, mostly steel beams from the World Trade Center, to police and fire deparments across the country. Any department that was interested had to apply for the artifact and explain its plans on how it would be displayed to the public.
The W. Bloomfield Township Fire Department's former chief applied for an artifact 3 years ago.
"Upon his retirement thought we had heard nothing and thought we were
not in the running, not in consideration. Ultimately, I heard from the NYNJ Port Authority ..they shared with me we had been selected," says Chief Jay Wiseman.
The 120 pound beam arrived in the spring. Chief Wiseman thought it should be a mobile display so the department can share it with the community.
"He gave us the direction to create memorial that could move from place to place," says Matt Miller, a firefighter/paramedic and member of the Honor Guard.
Miller and fellow Honor Guard members then came up with every detail they wanted to see on the display. They heard about an Ohio company who could turn it into a reality. That company ended up donating its services. The display is on wheels so it can be easily moved. It features the beam in the center and it's surrounded by four story boards that describe the World Trade Center and what happened on 9-11.
"Our plans are to make it available to groups and organizations in the W. Bloomfield area. We've even had requests outside the area. The calendar is filling already and it hasn't even been unveiled," says Chief Wiseman.
Miller says "My kids are 7 and soon to be 9 so they don't have a direct memory of what happened then. Hopefully kids will be able to look at it and see what happened to people on that day and the sacrifices people make for our freedom."
The community will get its first close-up look on Sunday at 2pm at the Remembrance & Dedication Ceremony at Fire Station Five, which is located at 5425 W. Maple Rd. in W. Bloomfield.
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