Solemn LI ceremonies mark 16 years since 9/11 attacks

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POINT LOOKOUT -

Solemn ceremonies were held across Long Island Monday to honor those lost in the Sept. 11 terror attacks 16 years ago.

Long Island's largest ceremony was held at Point Lookout Beach. The town of Hempstead unveiled its permanent Sept. 11 memorial park, which includes a monument with the names of all the people who died that day.

It also includes plaques with the names of those who have died of Sept. 11-related illnesses, including firefighter Ray Pfiefer, of Hicksville. Pfiefer's sister says he was the driving force behind the Zadroga Act, which provided health services and financial aid to those who served at ground zero.

The East Northport Fire Department also held a ceremony at its Sept. 11 memorial monument, which includes an 8-foot steel beam from ground zero.

And Hofstra University gathered to recognize its 26 alumni and one student who were lost in the attacks. The community observed a moment of silence in their honor.

At Suffolk police headquarters in Yaphank, a pear tree was officially dedicated as part of an Eagle Scout project. The seeds for the tree came from the so-called 9/11 survivor tree, which was discovered at ground zero after the attacks.

That project was spearheaded by Liam Morse, of Smithtown, who dreamed up the idea of building a walkway around the special tree. The tree is expected to reach 30 feet tall and serve as a memorial for those lost in the attacks.

Nearly 500 Long Islanders perished in the Sept. 11 attacks.

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