Today: Jul 11 , 2020

Healing Field Honors Victims of September 11th, 2001 Terror Attack

10 September 2017  
Two fields are filled with over 3,000 flags at the Prescott Valley Civic Center All Photos by: Torrence Dunham
Nearly 3,000 Flags at Prescott Valley Civic Center Tell Stories of Those Lost During September 11th, 2001 Attacks

PRESCOTT VALLEY- 32-year-old New York City resident Doris Torres was just one of the heroes during the September 11th, 2001 terror attacks on the World Trade Center in New York. Torres, who worked in foreign trade for Fiduciary Trust International at the World Trade Center, helped an emotional colleague down the stairs and returned to save more individuals during the attack. She died five days later due to burns.

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Her story joins 2,995 others on cards attached to American flags at the Prescott Valley Civic Center Healing Field, honoring individuals lost from citizens to public safety on that fateful day in New York City, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC.

Starting at 6:30 am Friday morning, September 8th, volunteers came to help place flags in the ground, attach a card to each flag and lay boots at the bottom for those lost in public safety. Prescott resident TJ Brown brought along his five-year-old daughter and eleven-year-old son to volunteer and learn about the tragedy.

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“We talked about it on the drive here, reading all of the names, talking about what happened,” Brown said.

Brown mentioned his daughter asked if the victims are buried in the field, providing an opportunity to teach his children about the loss of life on September 11th, 2001.

“I told her most of them are probably burned, they’re gone, they don’t have a grave,” said Brown, adding his son noticed how many firefighters were lost. “I think that makes an impact.”

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This is the goal of the Healing Field, brought to Prescott Valley by councilwoman Mary Mallory in 2011. The two fields filled with flags allow the younger generation to learn about the tragedy of the day and presents a chance for those who lived through it to learn more about those lost.

“Over the years, before this came to the forefront here in Prescott Valley, I knew a number,” Mallory said. “When you come out here, you meet these people. You get to know them, read their lives, and you find out just how short it was cut. You just don’t know a number anymore, but you know a family.”

Mallory worked with the community to bring the Healing Field to Prescott Valley after participating in Tempe's Healing Field. Since, volunteers have helped each year-rain or shine-to set up the memorial.

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“In no way would it be possible without the community,” Mallory said. “This community came together with us and that is what you see today. This is the work of a community saying that you know what, we’re joining in and we’re going to put this to the forefront and we are going to let everybody know never to forget those that were lost.”

Joining the American flags are twenty flags to honor the Granite Mountain Hotshots and a flag representing each branch of the armed forces. In the field, there are boots dedicated to 343 firefighters, fifty-five medical personnel, and seventy-two police officers along with eight teddy bears in remembrance of the children lost during the attack.

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The Healing Field will remain up through Friday, September 15th. A memorial ceremony at the Prescott Valley Civic Center will be held at 6 pm, Monday, September 11th.