As many look forward to the dedication of Phase I of the Flight 93 National Memorial, a new book looks back at the temporary memorial that once marked the crash site in Somerset County. Gripped by the site from the first time he laid eyes on it in 2005, Pittsburgh photographer and author Richard Snodgrass returned 50-times to capture moments in time, in all seasons and conditions. The best 92-images and accompanying prose can be found in the book, “An Uncommon Field.”
The setting was stark and beautiful, with a 40-foot fence just appearing out of nowhere. “People would be at the site, and then they just had to leave something,” Snodgrass says. “It took a while to get to this place, it’s not that accessible. But they would be the things that they had with them in the car. They would leave them and write “thank you” on it, to the heroes.”
The temporary memorial was taken down in 2009, but Snodgrass wasn’t sad to see it go. “It was really time to move on. I felt that, very much, it had run its course,” he explains. Half of the proceeds from “An Uncommon Field” will be donated to the Flight 93 National Memorial Fund. Snodgrass says the new, permanent memorial has the same spirit that always grabbed visitors at the old one. “It’s a very special place and I really urge people to go to it.”
Two days of dedication and 10th anniversary commemoration ceremonies will be held at the Flight 93 National Memorial on September 10th and 11th.