Preparing for the 9/11 Anniversary:
A Look at the Power of Journal Keeping
Friday, May 13, 6:30 p.m.
The Morgan Library & Museum, Madison Ave. between 36 and 37 St.
Gilder Lehrman Hall
Tickets are free. For advance reservations call 212.685.0008, ext. 560, or email email@example.com.
For the families, rescue and recovery workers, survivors, and other New Yorkers affected by the 9/11 attacks, the upcoming tenth anniversary commemorations are bound to stir deep emotion. This special evening, organized in conjunction with the exhibition The Diary: Three Centuries of Private Lives (which includes the journals of two police lieutenants who led 9/11 rescue and recovery efforts), explores the power of journal keeping and encourages participants to document their experience as this anniversary year unfolds.
Presenters include Bill Keegan (Port Authority Police Special Operations, W.T.C. 9/11 Rescue/Recovery Operations Commander, and founder of H.E.A.R.T. 9/11), whose journal is on view in the exhibition; Mary Fetchet, Founding Director of Voices of September 11th and Mother of Brad Fetchet who perished in the attacks on the World Trade Center; Maureen McNeil, Director of Education at the Anne Frank Center USA; and Christine Nelson, curator of the exhibition The Diary. The presentation will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the Gilder Lehrman Hall and is free and open to the public but reservations are required. Attendees are invited to view the gallery exhibition following the presentations. Make reservations by calling 212.685.0008, ext. 560, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lt. Bill Keegan, who served as a Rescue and Recovery Operations Commander for Port Authority Police Special Operations after 9/11, will discuss his personal experience. His journal is on display and open to the entry for Christmas Eve, 2001, when he joined with Port Authority chaplains Father Dave Baratelli and Rabbi Ichi Heschel in a midnight service at Ground Zero. Keegan later published a memoir, Closure: The Untold Story of the Ground Zero Recovery Mission, and founded H.E.A.R.T 9/11, a nonprofit organization comprised of veteran police officers, fire fighters, construction trade union workers, surviving families of those killed on September 11, 2001, and others who draw from their experience to provide coordinated international aid in cataclysmic situations, such as the recent earthquake in Haiti.
Mary Fetchet, a clinical social worker who co-founded Voices of September 11th following the death of her 24 year old son, Brad, in the attacks, will share her personal journey. She created a photographic journal of photographs of the people she met and the events she attended over the past 9 years - at remembrance services, the White House, Capitol Hill and the World Trade Center site. She reflected, "my one regret is that I didn't write my thoughts down in a journal. My focus was on my work - creating Voices of September 11th, providing support to the families and survivors, advocating for the 9/11 Commission reforms, and now working with rescue workers like Bill Keegan. The photographs I took bring back a flood of memories."
Maureen McNeil, Director of Education at the Anne Frank Center USA. will discuss how Anne Frank used her diary as a means of self discovery and as a vehicle for resiliency. In her diary, Anne talks about how she was inspired by her four helpers and how she wanted to emulate them and give back in a meaningful way. Maureen will also talk about how to get started writing a diary and how the creative process of writing a diary can be healing. The Anne Frank Center offers a wide range of education programs that allow visitors to explore Anne's personal story alongside the history of World War II and the Holocaust, and the need to identify and challenge prejudice.
Christine Nelson, Drue Heinz Curator of Literary and Historical Manuscript at The Morgan Library & Museum and curator of the exhibition The Diary, will discuss how people have turned to private journals for centuries in order to document their days, sort out creative problems, help them through crises, comfort them in solitude or pain, or preserve their stories for the future. Drawing on the personal stories on view in the exhibition - such as those of Walt Whitman, Sir Walter Scott, and Napoleon's battlefield surgeon - she will explore how such journals bridge time and experience in their expression of love, death, loss, and joy.
The event is co-organized by Voices of September 11th, H.E.A.R.T. 9/11, The Anne Frank Center USA, and The Morgan Library & Museum.
About Voices of September 11th
Voices of September 11th (VOICES) was founded in 2001 by 9/11 family
members Mary Fetchet, Mother of Brad Fetchet and Beverly Eckert, wife of
Sean Rooney. VOICES provides information, a wide range of support
services and commemorative events for 9/11 families, rescue workers and
survivors. In 2006 VOICES launched the 9/11 Living Memorial Project, a
digital archive, currently online at www.voicesofsept11.org, that commemorates the 3,000 lives
lost and documents the stories of survivors at the World Trade Center,
the Pentagon and in Shanksville Pennsylvania. VOICES staff assist
families and survivors in the emotional, but healing process of
documenting their loved ones lives and telling their personal stories.
The 9/11 Living Memorial contains an extensive collection of over 60,000
of photographs, letters, eulogies, and other mementoes that will become
a core component of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum.
About H.E.A.R.T. 9/11
H.E.A.R.T. 9/11, Healing Emergency Aid Response Team, is a group of highly trained and skilled volunteers that forged bonds from the ashes of ground zero. Our team consists of NYPD, FDNY, PAPD, EMT's, nurses, doctors and trade union members that come together with one common goal: to expedite, and streamline efforts of partnering organizations in an emergency setting. We deploy Customized Response Teams (CRT's) of volunteer experts, with more than 20 years of response training and extensive W.T.C. site rescue and recovery experience. We are able to directly and immediately support, supplement and transfer skills to on-site emergency first responders and victims. The expertise of H.E.A.R.T. 9/11 volunteers is unparalleled and saves lives.
About the Anne Frank Center
The Anne Frank Center USA, a partner organization of the Anne Frank House, uses the diary and spirit of Anne Frank as unique tools to advance her legacy, to educate young people and communities about the consequences of intolerance, racism and discrimination, and to inspire the next generation to build a world based on mutual respect. The Center was founded in 1977 by Otto Frank, father of Anne, as The American Friends of the Anne Frank House. With exclusive rights to Anne Frank's image and story, one of the most read books worldwide, the Center has emerged not only as a unique voice in Holocaust education but in the greater field of human rights.
About the Morgan Library & Museum
A global institution focused on the European and American traditions, the Morgan houses one of the world's foremost collections of manuscripts, rare books, music, drawings, and ancient and other works of art. These holdings, which represent the legacy of Pierpont Morgan and numerous later benefactors, comprise a unique and dynamic record of civilization, as well as an incomparable repository of ideas and of the creative process. Visit http://www.themorgan.org/exhibitions/online/TheDiary/ to learn more about the exhibition The Diary: Three Centuries of Private Lives.