Tribute in Lights

By Juan De La Cruz

Eighty-eight searchlights beamed into the sky September 11 during the annual tribute commemorating the lives lost in the World Trade Center attacks.

The bright blue-colored lights radiated four miles, forming two pillars symbolizing the Twin Towers. The beam spotlights are installed on top of the Battery Parking Garage, which is a six-minute walk from the 9/11 Memorial.

Thousands of New Yorkers took to the streets of Lower Manhattan to pay homage to family members, beloved friends and first responders that were lost that Tuesday morning. Flower arrangements, small American flags, and roses were among other personal items attached to long list of names that were engraved on the outer surfaces of the North and South Memorial Pools.

The Municipal Art Society of New York produced the first Tribute in Light show in March of 2002 and it has been held every September 11 since.

It was the first time David Meyer, 58, a professional storyteller from Los Angeles, witnessed the lights. Meyer was mourning the death of Laura Rockefeller, a close friend of his.

They two played together in various shows in the south during the 1970s before Meyer moved to Los Angeles. Rockefeller, who would have been celebrating her 59th birthday in 2019, worked as a risk manager at the luxurious Windows on The World. She was working at the restaurant, located on the 106th and 107th floors of the North Tower, when American Airlines Flight 11 crashed into the building.

Meyer says the death of his close friend led to hard times. He went to the chaotic site weeks after the attacks, looking for Rockefeller. In the aftermath of the tragedy, he wore only black as a tribute to her and all those whose lives were taken. “When I make it to the city, I leave flowers for Laura,” said Meyer.

For more information on Tribute in Lights, or The 911 Memorial Site head to

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