9/11 memorial planned for Indianapolis

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MARION COUNTY - Indianapolis is a city known for memorials, and it is about to get another one.

We all have different memories of September 11th, but one man in Indianapolis is turning his memories into action. The memorial will go up on Ohio Street near West Street.

A number of trees were moved from 421 West Ohio street on Friday. The knoll is just west of the Fire Station #13 at the corner of Ohio and West.

"It's going to be very dramatic," said Greg Hess.

It will not be as dramatic as the Ground Zero ruins he and the other members of Task Force One searched nearly ten years ago but to Greg Hess, September 11th is his generation's December 7th. So he came up with an idea. He petitioned the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for two internal support columns.

"We were notified in January of this year, yes, you did get your beams. Now come and get them," Hess said.

All told, each of the beams weighs in excess of five and a half tons so together it's over ten tons of stone and steel. But it's not really how much it weighs. It's about what it symbolizes.

That was clearly evident when the beams were trucked back to Indianapolis. Word spread quickly about what the 18-wheel trailer was carrying - two large pieces of American history. The beams had a motorcycle escort and people flew American flags as the procession passed by.

The two beams will stand straight up like the Twin Towers when the project is complete. A life-sized sculpture of an American eagle gazing toward New York City will be perched on top.

For now these beams are going on tour to help raise the money to make this dream a reality. Supporters are trying to raise $350,000 in donations to fund the project. So far they have raised about half of that.

"September 11th changed all of our lives," said Hess.

He wants a memorial that will change the city's landscape.

"This has been the last two years of my life. I started this 18 months ago. It's the last thing I think about each night and it's the very first thing I think about in the morning," he added.

It's a chance for all of us to remember what Hess and the other 62 members of Indiana's Task Force One can never forget.

Learn more about the project, including how you can donate.