Date Of Visit: September 6, 2020
Location: Cushing Memorial Park, 80 Dudley Rd, Framingham, MA (about half an hour from southwest from Boston, MA or 1 hour northwest of Providence, RI)
Hours: Open daily dawn until dusk
Parking: Free parking for over 100 vehicles is located at the entrance to the park and another nearby parking lot
Summary: Located at in the heart of Framingham, MA, the Cushing Memorial Park pays homage to the 17 victims from Framingham, MA. who were lost during the September 11 attacks.
Although it may seem like it occurred yesterday, tomorrow will mark 19 years since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Since the flights that were involved in the attacks departed from Logan Airport in Boston, MA, many communities of Massachusetts and New England were directly effected. One of those communities was the city of Framingham, MA.
Seventeen people from Framingham, MA, lost their lives on September 11. In an effort to memorialize these victims, the city constructed a place of remembrance at Cushing Memorial Park.
Seventeen trees, for each of the 17 victims from Framingham, with plaques containing the names of each victim on the ground in front of each tree. A yellow and a white floral arrangement adorn the plaques. A gazebo with benches inside for people to sit and reflect is located on a slight incline along the memorial.
The grass circular “void” between the planted trees on the left and those planted on the right of the gazebo is meant to represent the seventeen lives that never reached a natural conclusion. The designers planted maples, pines and the seventeen trees to represent strength, beauty, unity and the continuation of life. While those who passed are no longer with us, the trees planted in their memory will live on for many years to come.
To the left of the gazebo and trees is a plaque with an explanation of the design of the memorial and the details of the memorial of remembrance.
One tree stood out from all of the other trees at the memorial. Off to the other side of the pedestrian corridor is a Callery Pear tree that was seeded from the Survivor Tree at the site of the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks. The seed for the tree was gifted from the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. It was dedicated on September 11, 2019.
A granite marker with bronze engravings of the names of the seventeen victims sits in front of the gazebo.
As I took these photos and walked along the trails of the manicured lawns and throngs of people playing, walking and laughing at the park I noticed that many of the people may not visit or think about the memorial except during the annual ceremony at the park. It also occurred to me that as time passes many visitors to the park may not have even been alive when these attacks took place. But this memorial and the names of those lost will remain through the passing of time.