County commissioners will mark 20th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

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The Monmouth County Board of County Commissioners will hold a Sept. 11 memorial ceremony for a time of reflection and remembrance at Mount Mitchill Scenic Overlook, 460 Ocean Boulevard, Atlantic Highlands, on Sept. 11 at 8 a.m.

“As we approach the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the Board of County Commissioners invites the families of those who lost their lives during this tragedy,” Commissioner Director Thomas A. Arnone was quoted as saying in a press release from the county.

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“We will never forget what took place around the country on that tragic day, in particular, to the 147 families who lost loved ones who call Monmouth County home. We must continue to offer support to the families in any way possible,” Arnone said.

“Mount Mitchill is home to Monmouth County’s Sept. 11 memorial which is a tribute to the 147 men and women who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks,” said Commissioner Ross F. Licitra, liaison to the Monmouth County Park System.

“The path leading to the memorial chronicles the events of that day and at the center is the light stone sculpture of an eagle by local artist Franco Minervini. This eagle grasps a beam from the World Trade Center. It is a fitting tribute and our way of honoring those who lost their lives that day,” Licitra said.

At 266 feet, the overlook in Atlantic Highlands sits on the highest natural elevation on the Atlantic seaboard (excluding islands) from Maine to the Yucatan, providing beautiful views of Sandy Hook, Sandy Hook Bay, Raritan Bay and the New York skyline. The 12-acre site is also home to Monmouth County’s Sept. 11 memorial, according to the press release.

In 2002, the Monmouth County Sept. 11 Committee formed and began making plans for a fitting tribute to the victims, heroes and events of Sept. 11.

The group’s first responsibility was to select a memorial to fit into Mount Mitchill Scenic Overlook. The Sept. 11 Committee then embarked on a major fundraising effort to finance the memorial.

By midsummer 2005 the group exceeded its goal by raising $296,000. Continued donations will support the upkeep and maintenance of the memorial, according to the press release.

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