It was a day for reflection and remembrance as family members of the 48 Babylon residents who lost their lives on 9/11 gathered Sunday afternoon at the Town’s Hometown Memorial between Overlook and Cedar beaches.
Each Town resident who was a victim of the attacks on the World Trade Center has a plaque at the memorial dedicated in their memory.
The ceremony attracted thousands to the beachfront memorial, and all fire departments from across Babylon were represented.
"It's just a great turnout, a beautiful memorial, nice and calming by the beach, families coming to..." Anthony Zaccaro, a Lindenhurst resident, said before becoming overwhelmed by the moment.
Zaccaro attended the memorial service to honor the memory of Thomas Mingione, a member of FDNY Ladder 132, who lost his life at the World Trade Center a decade ago. The two men were friends and served together with Ladder 132.
Babylon Town Supervisor Steve Bellone said that 9/11 in Babylon has always been about remembering those from the community who were lost a decade ago.
“(The memorial) was not something that was built here by the town, this memorial was created by the families of 9/11,” he said.
While the ceremony served to remember those lost, the message of life was spread throughout the day, a message Town Fire Chiefs Association President Jeff Thompson said is alive and well at the memorial site.
"This was built here for the living, and I think it's important that families have a place to come, think about good times...they should never be forgotten," Thompson said.
As the ceremonies were set to begin, a light rain began to fall, perhaps echoing the tears shed up and down the beach. Soon the rain stopped, in time for the reading of each victim's name.
"No matter how much time goes by, they will always be remembered," Bellone said.