Mariposa Art Park to dedicate 9/11 sculpture


Welder and Fire Captain Dennis Buck recently finished his most meaningful project: a sculpture made of four twisted beams from the World Trade Center.

Capt. Dennis Buck says, "It's amazing how privileged I feel to be a part of memorializing what we're doing to remember 9/11 and what happened to America that day."

Buck worked with a group of people to construct the symbolic structure. The degrees of each angle signify specific numbers tied to the attacks: 9, 11, 20, and 01 for the date, and 17 degrees for the number of minutes between when the first and second planes hit the twin towers.

"America braced itself at that 17 minutes because the world had changed, and we knew it. And what was interesting about that 17 minutes is that when you draw a circle and you go all the way around and you minus out 17 from 360 degrees, the remaining number is 343, which is the number of firefighters who were lost on 9/11," said Buck.

The sculpture will be the focal point of a ceremony here at the Mariposa Art Park Sunday, and it will eventually become the centerpiece of a permanent memorial in this same spot.

Fire Chief Jim Wilson requested these beams for the memorial so residents and tourists will have a special place to reflect on the tragedy of the attacks, and the solidarity that followed. "Yosemite attracts 4 million visitors a year, and a good percentage of those come through Mariposa andstop here, and we're hoping we can share our feelings and our emotion of 9/11 with those visitors as they come through."

Mariposa's 9/11 ceremony starts Sunday at 1pm at the Mariposa Art Park. Everyone is invited to honor the lives of those lost ten years ago.

The Mariposa 9/11 Memorial Committee is still raising funds to help complete the memorial. You can make a tax deductible contribution at the Mariposa County Fire Department at 5082 Bullion in Mariposa. Or you can call the Mariposa County Arts Council at 209-966-3155 to make a credit card donation.

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