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NYC Council passes 9/11 resolution inspired by Belle Harbor students

Sep. 22, 2023 By Bill Parry

Just days after the city marked the 22nd anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the World Trade Center, the City Council voted unanimously to approve Resolution 415, calling on Congress and the Biden administration to sign the September 11 Day of Remembrance Act.

The act will officially designate the date as a federal holiday and give Americans a day off from work and school to more fully contemplate the impact the tragic event had on the history on the city and nation.

Councilwoman Joann Ariola was inspired to sponsor the resolution by Belle Harbor students who contacted her recently.

Ariola says she was inspired by two Belle Harbor students to sponsor the resolution.Courtesy of NYC Council

“This resolution was really spurred on by a moving email I received from two students at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Academy in Belle Harbor,” Ariola said. “Those students – twins named Anthony and Alexa Gennaro – wanted to keep the memory of their aunt Lucy Ann Fishman alive for future generations to remember. They had never met Lucy themselves, but her legacy remains an important part of their lives. This letter really drove home the fact that there is an entire generation of young people out there who didn’t witness the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and who might forget in time just what a sacrifice was made that day. In Lucy’s memory, and in memory of the thousands of others who lost their lives in that tragedy, I believe it is vital that we designate September 11 as a day of remembrance and a federal holiday, so that all generations of the future can really understand the significance of those attacks.”

Manhattan Councilwoman Julie Menin, who served on the 9/11 jury that selected the design for the September 11th Memorial and continues to serve on its board, supported Ariola’s resolution.

“The events of 9/11 left an enduring imprint on our nation’s history, and our commitment to ‘never forget’ remains resolute,” Menin said. “Despite memorials and tributes, many states lack 9/11 education and this tragic day must be remembered for future generations. Council Member Joann Ariola is taking that next step by sponsoring a resolution calling on Congress to make Sept. 11 a federal holiday. The September 11th Day of Remembrance Act would unite us and honor those bonds forged in tragedy. Let’s make September 11th a national holiday and ensure we never forget.”

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