SEPTEMBER 11 MEMORIAL 

ANTHONY, KANSAS

We have not forgotten; We will never forget; We will always care. 

A tribute to the Heroes of 9-11.



Home

Meet Joseph P. Spor

Ground Breaking Ceremony

Building the Memorial

Dedication Night

Read the Story Boards and Other Plaques

Firefighters' Honor Roll

Buy a Brick

 "Have You Forgotten?" Video

Read & Sign Our Guestbook

From Our Governor

Official 9-11 Memorial of Kansas

From The Mayor Series

KC St. Patty's Day Parade

10th Anniversary Photo Album

FAQ

Anthony Fire Dept.

City of Anthony

 

 

        

 

What a wonderful day we had! A flag-lined Memorial Park  was the setting for the 10th anniversary of the tragedies on Sept. 11,2001.  We had great weather, great entertainment, and a park full of friends and family.  I'm trying to get through all the photos that I took as well as others that were taken by our guests and will get them posted to this site as soon as I can.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to our FDNY visitors, Lt. Jim Beltrami, Capt. Rich Kirschner and Jim McSwigin (ret.) Fire Marshall who have given their unending support and generosity to help us make what our memorial is today.  We can never repay you for all you have done for us. 

We really appreciate David Mardis, of Caldwell, Ks. being our guest speaker.  David was a FEMA worker at Ground Zero and shared his experience with us.

Thank you to all those who came to share your day with us.  Each and every one of you made the occasion special for us.  We could never have done this without the support of our community and our families. 

Update:  Lt. Joe Huber, FDNY and Capt. Ray Wynn (ret.) of KCFD visited the memorial on Sept. 30th, since they were not able to attend the services on the 10th.  Thanks to both for all their support from day 1 to the Anthony 9-11 Memorial.

Thanks to Susan Orsbon for the beautiful photo of the World Trade Center steel. 

 

Kansas 9-11 Memorial Committee: Donna Crowe, Chairman; Members: Shirley Barrett, Sam Beam, Cynda Carr, Howard Hatfield, Debbie Mangen & Pam Schott.

9-11 event volunteers: Tammy Ward, Larry & Jane Whisman, Anthony Girl Scouts, Anthony Fire Department, Anthony Kiwanis Club, Rev. Mary Hixson, Rev. Mike McAbee, Assembly of God Church, Rolly Williams, Shawn Catlin, Leigh Schreiner, Debbie Hatfield, Dennis Robinson, Don Gebers, Lauren Hatfield and Haley Dodgen, Chaparral Singers, Chaparral's Drum Line, Atmos Energy, Anthony Farmers' Co-op, Home Lumber and Supply, Gene's Grocery, ALCO, Larry's IGA & USD #361.


Never Forget September 11, 2001

If we don't do this correctly - if we let some minor memorial be dwarfed by office space - people a hundred years from now will say this generation did not understand the significance of that world-altering day. Sept. 11 must not lose its resonance as time dulls the sharp edges our collective memory. Ground zero is the site of the worst attack in the history of our country. I pray it will be the worst attack in the history of this country a hundred years from now. Done correctly, a memorial will inspire people. It should not symbolize the loss of our world before Sept. 11 or of an America that no longer exists. It should symbolize our survival and our triumph.


Rudolph Giuliani,

Mayor of NY 1994-2001


Hello and Welcome to the home of Kansas' Official Sept. 11 Memorial in Anthony, Ks.  Our memorial has been erected to the memory of those true patriots who gave their lives during this horrific tragedy in NYC, Washington D.C. and a field near Shanksville, Pa, and to honor those left behind.  The memorial is about ordinary people who met extraordinary challenges, working together to make a difference across our nation, and in the lives of one hero firefighter's family.  It tells the story of the connection between a small farming community of 2300 people in south-central Kansas, fallen firefighter Joseph P. Spor, Jr. and his brothers at Engine 88, Ladder 38 FDNY, and Rescue 3.

Even though Anthony, Kansas is hundreds of miles from the 3 crash sites, we felt their shock, horror and pain of Sept. 11, 2001.  The people of Anthony wanted to do something to help that would make a difference.  After contacting several agencies, our mayor at the time, John Schott, finally connected with a firehouse in the Bronx that had been devastated with many losses.  He asked if they could help our small community locate one family that had lost a loved one that might need some immediate outside assistance.  Joe Huber, at Engine 88, Ladder Company 38, told the mayor about his friend and co-worker, Joe Spor.  He said Joe was 35 yrs. old, had a beautiful wife, Colleen, and had 4 children, the oldest was 6 and the youngest was 6 months old.  Joe Spor lost his life helping others to safety on 9-11-2001 at the World Trade Center.  The people from Anthony "adopted" this family.  

In March of 2002, Joe Huber came to Anthony from the Bronx, representing FDNY Engine 88, Ladder Company 38, to personally thank its citizens and to meet the people who have been so kind to his "brother's" family.  He was so gracious to visit the schools and meet the children who had sent gifts, cards, pictures and emails to the firehouse and to the Spor family.  On this visit, Joe Huber brought a piece of glass and other artifacts to show the students.  It was on this trip that the idea of Anthony obtaining some WTC steel was discussed.  Mayor Schott mentioned to him that he would like some steel from the World Trade Center to make a permanent memorial to the victims and heroes of September 11 and Anthony’s response to that tragedy.  After many emails and phone calls between Anthony and New York, a man in the NYC Mayor's office said we would get our steel, but the steel had to be picked up in Brooklyn in 4 days.  Without any funds, and on such a short deadline, Schott, the local True Value Hardware Store owner, picked up the phone and made several more calls.  He ended up speaking to the CEO of True Value.  She said that Anthony sounded like a wonderful, caring place of generous people and that  the company would gladly pick up the steel in Brooklyn and deliver it to Anthony at no charge.  After a couple more phone calls to the True Value trucking managers in Allenstown, Pennsylvania and Kansas City, the arrangements were all in order.  On October 23, 2002 the True Value truck pulled up behind the store carrying their weekly order and a very special delivery from the City of New York.

Mayor Schott organized a committee of volunteers with various talents and they were asked to design the right memorial out of this steel from the rubble of the World Trade Center.  The memorial they designed and created was to honor not only the victims and heroes of that horrendous attack, but also the triumph of the American spirit as Anthony responded with compassion, resolve, and care.  And as a gift, it was to be built without tax monies.  The memorial's original figures ran in the vicinity of $40,000 and the committee had to use private and corporate donations and money received from a variety of fund raisers.  Little did they know at the time, the cost of the structure itself would be more than double that figure.

In the early planning stages, the Anthony 9-11 Memorial was the recipient of many nice newspaper articles.  There were articles from the Kansas City Star, The Hutchinson News, The Wichita Eagle, Kansas Government Journal, & The New York Daily News.  Even a national team from FOX News did a beautiful television story that aired the night of the memorial's dedication on Sept. 11, 2004.

After hearing about our endeavor, Mr. Shane Gentry, a WTC survivor from Shawnee, Kansas, drove over 250 miles to attend our Ground-breaking Ceremony.  He spoke of his experiences that day and how it had affected him.  He said when he returned to his hotel room that day, he knew that the ashes from his clothing would be something he needed to keep. He opened a newspaper he had read that morning and then shook the ashes from his clothing to save.  He wondered later what he would do with them.  Shane returned to NYC to the one year commemoration of the Attacks on America. While there, he gathered some soil from the site of the WTC to save with the ashes from the year before. When Shane read about the Anthony 9-11 Memorial he knew then where they belonged.  He sifted the soil from the WTC site and ashes collected from his clothing into the warm Kansas earth, and mixed it with the soil that would soon hold the Anthony 9-11 Memorial.  His actions prompted the committee to try to obtain some artifacts from the Pentagon and the Pennsylvania crash site of United Flight 93, to add to our WTC steel.

 

The Pentagon agreed to release a 250-pound block of limestone from the facing of the wall that was hit by the terrorists.  The numbers cut into the block identifies exactly where the stone was located on a map at the Pentagon.  Col. Michael Fergason delivered it to Anthony on July 15, 2004. 

 

 

 

The Flight 93 Memorial Committee and the Families of Flight 93 sent some soil and ashes from the area of the Pennsylvania crash site.  It arrived mid August 2004.

Both of these additions, along with the WTC steel we received, completed the purpose of the memorial:  to tell the story of 9-11 and the response of a small town far removed from the attack sites, and to honor ALL the heroes we lost that day.

This image, taken by Harper Co. Sheriff Deputy Kenny Hodson, shows how the memorial appears at night.  Beams of light illuminate the three panels as well as the World Trade Center steel and the 3 flags. "Twin Towers of light", that do not show up this photo, shoot directly toward the heavens from behind the 2 limestone pillars located between the flag poles, in tribute to the twin towers. 

Please take the time to browse through our many pages and links.  Watch the memorial grow from an open space in a corner of Memorial Park to the completed tribute to the heroes of 9-11.  Read the 3 large bronze plaques that tell the story not only of what happened that day, but how this town in Kansas, along with our nation, and the rest of the world, reacted.  Click on our Memorial Dedication  link and see the many local area emergency units who marched in our "PARADE OF HEROES" and who were honored with the dedication of the memorial.  The Wichita Fire Department Honor Guard asked to come and be a part of our ceremony.  Firefighters from New York, Kansas and Oklahoma marched together as one.  The support of the community was amazing.  Everyone was involved, right down to the school children, leading the Pledge of Allegiance.  The Anthony Fire Dept. cooked hot dogs and hamburgers donated by the area grocers and livestock producers.  Follow the links to the transcripts of the Kansas Legislature that designated that the Anthony 9-11 Memorial was the official 9-11 memorial for the state.  Read the governor's official statement about our memorial on March 28, 2006.

Meet a few of the FDNY firefighters who came to help in the memorial dedication on Sept. 2004.  Some of them return annually to visit the memorial and their new friends.  They also join some of the local firefighters to spend some time deer hunting.  Several other FDNY firefighters have come to see the memorial and read the names of their fallen "brothers" on the bricks.  When two of the men came to Anthony in the spring of 2008, we actually asked them to lay the engraved memorial bricks we had ready to go.  Included in these bricks was the brick of a young man from Anthony who had given his life in Iraq.  Another brick was for a FDNY firefighter that they knew and also know his family.

This connection has not stopped with the memorial.  Many people from Anthony have visited New York for the first time, and while they were there, they made sure to stop by to see their extended family at Engine 88, Ladder 38.  A bond has formed between the two communities; so different in many ways, but so much alike in others.  We are a family.

 

We'd like to invite you to come to Anthony. The map below shows where Anthony is located. 

 

 

 

NOTICE:  In March of 2008, my computer died with ALL of my 9-11 information on it.  I lost my website information, photos and all of the email addresses to my 9-11 friends across the US.  If you were on my contact list or would like to be added to our list, with announced updates on our progress and information about coming events, please email the website at the bottom of this page.    Debbie   


 

 

 

This website was designed and is maintained by

Debbie Mangen

September 11 Memorial Committee

Anthony, Kansas

Any comments or questions should be directed to AnthonySept11Memorial@gmail.com

Last Updated Sept. 30, 2011