For the third consecutive year, Cedar Grove High School in Cedar Grove, New Jersey, will install “Cedar Grove Waves,” a display of 2,977 flags on the school’s campus to honor the victims of the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. Each victim is commemorated with a nameplate next to the flag of his or her home country.
The project was inspired by a similar display at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California, and is once again being shepherded by Cedar Grove resident David W. Schoner Jr. Mr. Schoner, who has school-age children of his own, set about the project with the goal of ensuring that local schoolchildren not forget the events of 9/11.
“Cedar Grove Waves serves as a reminder that although 16 years have passed, we will truly never forget,” Mr. Schoner said. “The Cedar Grove High School display serves as a vivid reminder of that terrible day, and is a beautiful tribute to the victims and their families.”
Mr. Schoner said he was inspired to promote the memorial when he realized that the collective memory of 9/11 may be fading with each new generation.
The 30-inch flags will be planted by Cedar Grove High School students Thursday and Friday, and will fly on the lawn through Sept. 23. All Cedar Grove High School students will have the chance to install six flags, and the school will incorporate 9/11 into its educational curricula all throughout September. Cedar Grove High students work in conjunction with teachers, administrators and community volunteers to design, assemble and install the flags for the memorial.
At the precise moment of the first terrorist attack, a moment of silence will be held for attendees — students and community members alike — to reflect.
“Cedar Grove Waves is a remarkable way to start the school year,” said Richard Mangili, Cedar Grove High School’s principal. “The student body really comes together to honor those we’ve lost, which is awe-inspiring considering the fact that about half of the students weren’t even born as of September 2001.”
Funding for Cedar Groves Waves was made possible via private donations from community businesses, private individuals and the Cedar Grove Education Association. The Cedar Grove Waves Memorial Tribute (CGWMT) is seeking to improve the fixture for ensuing years by installing permanent flag-mounting brackets on the front lawn of the school. Furthermore, the project has reached beyond Cedar Grove, with students from the nearby Lyndhurst School District coming aboard last year.
Plans for this year also entail having the high school choir perform, a bagpiper playing “Amazing Grace” and a trumpeter playing “Taps” to close out the ceremony.
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