The Twin Beams will shine on 9/11 after all this year.

After the 9/11 Memorial and Museum announced the Tribute in Light won't shine on September 11th this year due to COVID-19, Governor Cuomo stepped up, providing health personnel to make sure it happens.

"This year it is especially important that we all appreciate and commemorate 9/11, the lives lost, and the heroism displayed as New Yorkers are once again called upon to face a common enemy," said Cuomo. "I understand the Museum's concern for health and safety, and appreciate their reconsideration. The state will provide health personnel to supervise to make sure the event is held safely while at the same time properly honoring 9/11. We will never forget."

9/11 Memorial & Museum President and CEO Alice M. Greenwald thanked Governor Cuomo and New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg for their help offsetting the increased costs associated with the health and safety considerations around the tribute this year. "This will enable the tribute to be a continuing source of comfort to families and an inspiration to the world going forward."

Reading of the Names

The focus of the 9/11 commemoration has always been the reading of names of those who died on that fateful day. This year family members will not read the names of victims in person.

We are committed to a live commemoration that will be as beautiful and meaningful as ever, while also protecting the health and well-being of families. We can and will do both.

This year, the names, read by family members, will be broadcast on speakers placed around Memorial plaza. Families may choose to stand near their loved ones’ names on the Memorial pools or sit on benches under the trees, without fear of being too close to others.

Getty Images

Throughout the ceremony, there will be six moments of silence, acknowledging when each of the World Trade Center towers was struck and fell, and the times corresponding to the attack on the Pentagon and the crash of United Airlines Flight 93. The ceremony will begin at 8:30 a.m., and the first moment of silence will be observed at 8:46 a.m.

We understand the disappointment that some within the 9/11 community have expressed with this year’s change. The difficult decision was to not put families, who have already gone through so much, potentially at additional risk, while remaining fully committed to enabling all present to hear the names of their loved ones spoken by family members in the serene and sacred setting of the Memorial.

9/11 is the single deadliest terrorist attack in history. Thousands were killed when two planes crashed in the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. A third plane crashed into the Pentagon and a fourth, United Airlines Flight 93, bound for Washington, D.C., crashed in a field in Pennsylvania, after passengers overtook the hijackers. May we never forget.