How can we remember those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attacks, and support the mental health of survivors and their families?
As we commemorate the 20th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, organizations, groups, and individuals gather to pay respect and honor the survivors, victims’ families, and the first responders.
Twenty years later, many World Trade Center first responders are still struggling with posttraumatic stress disorder, depression, and substance use. To raise awareness of their ongoing mental health needs, the Quell Foundation is sponsoring Ride of Hope, a 5-day bike ride from the World Trade Center to the Pentagon.
The Voices Center for Resilience has compiled victim remembrances and survivor stories. Donations to the center support mental health and other services for survivors and victims’ families.
During the World Trade Center attacks, 343 firefighters lost their lives. On the 20th anniversary of the event, fire departments nationwide are recognizing their fallen colleagues.
Firefighters in New York City have organized a bike ride from Montauk, New York to Washington, DC. https://www.fdny343ride.com/
The 9/11 Memorial and Museum has an extensive collection of educational webinars, including some designed especially for schoolchildren. Online visitors can hear personal stories and ask questions during a live chat with museum staffers.
At Arlington Cemetery and cemeteries around the nation, Americans will gather to perform wreath-laying ceremonies. Find a local ceremony or make a donation here: https://www.wreathsacrossamerica.org/
Cable and network television channels are broadcasting new documentaries about 9/11 and its aftermath. Here is a sampling.
National Geographic Channel and Hulu have made a 6-part miniseries, One Day in America. It is available to stream (for subscribers): https://www.nationalgeographic.com/tv/shows/911-one-day-in-america
PBS has made a documentary titled “Generation 9/11,” following 7 children who lost their fathers on that day. It is streaming at: https://www.pbs.org/show/generation-911/
ABC News has made “The Longest Shadow,” 5-part documentary. It will air on September 6 and be available to stream afterwards.
There are many ways to mark the anniversary with friends and families, or even on your own. Observe a moment of silence, ring bells, read victims’ names aloud, or lower flags.
The 9/11 Memorial and Museum offers ideas and guidelines: https://www.911memorial.org/connect/commemoration/September-11-2001
The September issue of Psychiatric TimesTM includes a cover story on the 20th anniversary of attacks, “9/11 20th Anniversary: COVID Endgame,” by James L. Knoll IV, MD.
Look back with Psychiatric TimesTM by reading and viewing articles and videos on the 9/11 attacks and psychiatry: https://www.psychiatrictimes.com/search?searchTerm=9%2F11