Group hopes to bring Sept. 11 memorial to Washington

WASHINGTON, IOWA (GTNS) ? ?Who remembers what you were doing on Sept. 11, 2001? Who remembers how it made you feel??

This is the question Carol Horning recently asked the Washington City Council. Most of the council and the other people present raised their hands to signify they remembered the terrorist attacks on the United States. Horning went on to say that Washington County has a special opportunity to bring a 9/11 traveling memorial to the Washington County Fair this year.

?Our young kids don?t have any idea what 9/11 was like, because they were not there,? Horning said. ?We think everyone knows, but our children weren?t there. We need to educate them about what that was like and we have the opportunity to do that.?

Horning said the traveling memorial only goes to county and state fairs. She said the cost to bring the memorial to the Washington County Fair this year would be $10,000, of which over $5,000 has already been raised. There had been discussion of partnering with surrounding counties, but Horning said that she knows Washington County can bring the memorial to the county on its own. She also said that if another county helped, that county would expect to have the memorial in their county instead of Washington.

?I want it to bring people to town,? she said. ?I want them to eat while they are here. I want them to visit the fairgrounds. I want them to visit downtown. I want it here.?

Horning said 93 percent of the money for bringing the memorial to town goes to the Stephen Siller Foundation to build smart homes for catastrophically injured soldiers. The remainder goes to area fire departments.

She said both the Washington Police Department, Washington Fire Department, and Washington County Sheriff?s office supported the notion of bringing the memorial to the county.

Horning asked for support from the council. Because the issue was not on the agenda, the council did not discuss making a donation to the fund. She said if the memorial is funded, it would be at the Washington County Fair on July 15, 16, and 17. Admission is free.

?I think it would be great if we could contribute in some way,? Mayor Jaron Rosien said. ?We don?t know what that is today, but that is a conversation we will definitely have.?

She said the tour would include two New York firefighters who could speak about the day of the attacks.

Horning said she is going to visit service groups to see if support can be raised to bring the memorial to Washington.

People wishing to contribute to the fund to bring the memorial to town can make checks out to the Washington County Fair Board and to be sure to include in the memo that it is for the Sept. 11 memorial exhibit. Checks can be sent to Horning at: 1770 Larch Ave., Wellman 52356.