Flagpole Added to Hawley 9/11 Memorial

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HAWLEY -- The terror from 14 years ago still shakes many who gathered Friday in Hawley.

One former New York City firefighter held his friends close as he remembered September 11, 2001.

"A lot of it is a haze. I think you try to forget, you can't. It's the first thing you think about when you wake up in the morning. It's the last thing you think about before you go to bed,” said former FDNY member Vinny DeMarinis.

This is the fourth year the Hawley community has gathered in Bingham Park. Steel from the World Trade Center sits as a reminder of the attack on the U.S. and now a flag pole, donated by Flagpole Inc., marks this place of reflection and remembrance.

“It was a big absence. It should have been done when we first built the memorial, but we didn't have the funds for it,” said New York Port Authority Police retiree Bob Essex.

Essex was working at the World Trade Center that day for the Port Authority. Before the American flag was raised here, he took it right to Ground Zero.

"I went down to the Trade Center on Wednesday and flew it at the site, and it was just great going in, and all of a sudden I got overwhelmed,” said Essex.

Now this flag that's flown over the World Trade Center will remain in Hawley forever, something that's important to so many here in this community.

Some of these men in uniform are living with reminders of 9/11 every day.

"I myself had a tumor removed last year that was directly related to the toxic air that I was breathing in, digging up my brothers,” said DeMarinis.

Others gathered prayed for peace in a world that still is facing a great deal of unrest.

“It's a lot to think about, a lot to remember and I happen to come from a very patriotic family,” said Ann Wiedenman of Paupack Township.