Managing EditorIt was impromptu, but the people themselves made a ceremony for 9/11 in Hawley.?Gathering on three sides of the year-old monument in Bingham Park were 26 people. Bob Essex, a retired New York City Port Authority Policeman who responded to the World Trade Center disaster 11 years ago, had earlier announced that while no formal ceremony had been put together, he was going to be there at 1 p.m. to say a prayer, and anyone who would like to join him was welcome. The notice was made in The News Eagle.?Dressed in his parade uniform, Essex placed a bouquet of flowers down at the foot of the pink granite pedestal, that holds a slab of iron from the World Trade Center ruins. The pink granite came from left-over material from the World Trade Center’s construction.?Someone else had already left a bunch of roses there, anonymously.?He asked Evelyn Kent, a deacon at the 1st Presbyterian Church in Hawley, to say a prayer. She called on God to be with the survivors and all who endured that day, and beseeched God to defend this land.?Sue Baldwin, who also served on the Hawley 9/11 Committee with Essex and in fact proposed the idea for the memorial to Borough Council, asked if anyone would like to share anything.?One by one, numerous people spoke. Some shared their precious memories of the World Trade Center; others spoke of the bravery of the many heroes made that day. Some recalled where they were that fateful day.?Ilona Grosz fondly remembered the country concerts she used to attend at the World Trade Center ball room. Another woman, an immigrant to these shores, said she lost a loved one in the attack. Another woman said she was visiting Paris, France that day. The hotel opened up a big room for the guests to come together, and let them call home for free.?Lu Seagraves said she was working at Brookside Personal Care Home when the attacks occurred. She said her heart was gone. All she could do was pray for everyone involved.?Joe Tracey, a resident of Hidden Lakes Estates, outside Hawley, said he saw the attack happen. He is a retired a New York City fireman, and was already retired when the attacks occurred. He was working in a building next to the South Tower.?He was in a meeting when his boss told him a plane had hit one of the towers. Tracey thought it must be a Piper Cub or maybe a helicopter. “I looked out the window, and said, Oh my God...”?Tracey had to keep everyone in the building as that was deemed to be the safest place to be, Like others, he assumed the airline crash was a tragic accident. He stepped outside to inspect the exterior of the building when he looked up, and saw the second plane hit.?“I remember mostly those poor people hanging from the windows,” Tracey recalled. “I wondered what they were thinking.”?He said he had to outrun the rushing cloud of debris.?Tracey said he knew many firefighters who were killed that day.?Baldwin spoke of the effort in raising money and getting the memorial in Hawley ready. She thanked the people of Hawley for their support. She and Essex both spoke of plans to have a ceremony next year.?Baldwin reminded that the memorial is open every day to visit. The public is welcome to come any time to pay their respects.?A recurring theme in the crowd was they would never forget that day of Sept. 11, 2001, and were resolved as a nation to remain strong.