St. Michael’s plans NYPD memorial

Led with fundraising efforts by Congressman Joseph Crowley, St. Michael’s Cemetery in East Elmhurst is attempting to create a memorial for the 23 New York Police Department (NYPD) Officers who died in the World Trade Center tragedy in time for the annual memorial service in September.
The NYPD memorial, construction of which began last week, is expected to be finished in time for the fourth annual Memorial Service on Saturday, September 8, in the cemetery, where dedication of the memorial will also take place.
Three years ago, St. Michael’s created a memorial for the 76 Queens firefighters who died on 9/11. The creation of that memorial was also spearheaded by Crowley, who lost a cousin in the tragedy, Fire Department of New York (FDNY) Battalion Chief John Moran. Joining him in the effort to erect the FDNY memorial was the surviving family of Christopher Santora, who, at 23-years-old, is believed to be the youngest firefighter to die in the terrorist attack on the Twin Towers.
“Every year we try to expand on the memorials,” said Ed Horn, public relations coordinator for St. Michael’s, of the NYPD memorial, which will stand near the existing memorials.
Last year, Horn said, St. Michael’s created a memorial for the 39 Port Authority Police Department (PAPD) Officers who died on September 11. Next year’s plans include a memorial for all First Responders, which will serve as “a living legacy” for all who died while on duty, regardless of where, said Horn.
An interesting part of the memorials is the inclusion of a “memory medallion,” a half-dollar sized diskette that holds a photo and up to 600 words about each of the honored individuals. The profiles can be viewed by linking with a computer or PDA.
Memory Medallions, Inc. contributed about $40,000 in medallions for the FDNY memorial, contributed medallions for the PADA memorial, and is planning to install medallions for the NYPD memorial as well.
Handheld computers will be handed out after the service, to all who wish to read the profiles, said Horn. They are a wonderful “extension to a line on stone,” he added.

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