Apr 112013


In our travels from Lancaster back home to Pittsburgh, we stopped at the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, PA. The road wound us all over a rural expanse of undeveloped land. No houses. No businesses. Barely any other cars. Just the three of us, driving closer and closer to a site of tragedy and gloom.


Once we parked, we had to walk a bit to the actual memorial. Only family members are permitted to visit the actual crash site, which is presently marked with a small boulder and a flag. Apparently, there is a monument in development.


Objects of rememberance were scattered across the wall leading up to the memorial. I’m not going to lie — it was hard to even breathe while we were there. It was scary being so close to where such a huge piece of our tragic history was scripted, but mostly just overwhelmingly sad.



At the end of the path, there are tall marble markers etched with the names of the crew and passengers, angled toward the direction in which the plane was crashing.


After visiting Shanksville, I can’t even begin to imagine what the Ground Zero Memorial would do to me.

  5 Responses to “Shanksville: Flight 93 Memorial”

  1. That would be so emotionally overwhelming. Wow.

  2. It’s such a powerful place, isn’t it? I’ve been there twice (once alone and once with my husband and kids) and I am always speechless every time. Did you talk with any of the volunteer docents there? If not, be sure to do that if you go again.They are local people and their role is to tell visitors about what happened that day … they fill in a lot of details that aren’t mentioned and talk about how the design of the Memorial (i.e. it being shaped like the wing of a plane, how the gate to the crash site is made from the wood of the trees that burned) is intentional. Listening to them takes you right back to 9/11. It is eerie.

    • Totally powerful!

      Unfortunately we didn’t talk to any of the docents because our kid was approaching hunger meltdown & that is definitely not the place for a scene! I’m hoping to go back again without him, especially since its not that bad of a drive.

  3. I’ve been wanting to go there for so long. It was not far from where I went to school, but no one ever would ever visit it with me. This post just resparked my interest in going there one day soon.

    I actually drove past it last Spring because I had a job interview about 3 miles up the street from it. I wanted to stop afterwards, but I woke up that morning with poison ivy ALL OVER MY FACE AND EYES. I don’t even know how I got through that interview lol

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