WYANDANCH - Communities across Long Island held memorial ceremonies in honor of the thousands of lives taken on Sept. 11, including Wyandanch, where the volunteer fire department dedicated a new waterfall memorial.
Steven Coakley was a member of that department on the day of the terrorist attacks. He was also one of the 343 FDNY firefighters who died in the line of duty that day.
"He just got off duty, and he was going home," recalled Allen Goetz, president of the Wyandanch Fire Company. "He heard about the towers, and he ran back to the firehouse to be a part of that, and he lost his life."
The waterfall in Wyandanch contains a centerpiece made from a steel beam taken from the fallen Twin Towers. Two other beams symbolize the towers as they stood before the attack.
In the Town of Islip, residents gathered at a memorial to honor the 90 local residents who died on Sept. 11.
"They were just going to work," said Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter. "So many people were lost, and it is incumbent upon us to never, ever forget."