One Month After 9/11, Recovery Workers Found The Charred Remains Of A Callery Pear Tree That Survived The Destruction And Went On To Be Planted At The National 9/11 Memorial And Museum

Nicholas J. Klein - - illustrative purposes only

About a month after the 9/11 attacks wreaked havoc on the United States, a survivor was found amidst the wreckage.

Recovery workers dug out the charred remains of a Callery pear tree. Its trunk was blackened, the boughs were broken, and the roots were snapped, but it still had a few leaves growing from a branch.

It was sent to Van Cortlandt Park, where it was placed under the care of the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation. The park workers were able to nurse the tree back to health, even though they hadn’t been sure the tree would make it at first.

But, in the spring of 2002, it sprouted a bunch of new leaves, and a dove even made a nest on its branches.

The tree was originally planted at the World Trade Center in the 1970s. After the tree’s health was restored, it was returned home and planted at the National 9/11 Memorial & Museum, where it still stands tall next to the South Pool today.

It is known as the Survivor Tree, representing the strength and spirit of our nation and serving as a testament to hope and resilience in the face of destruction. The unique tree is the first to bud in the spring and the last to drop its leaves in the fall.

In 2013, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum launched the Survivor Tree Seedling Program in partnership with John Bowe High School in Flushing, Queens, and Bartlett Tree Experts.

Every year, seedlings from the Survivor Tree are given to three communities that have undergone a recent major tragic event.

For instance, in 2018, seedlings were donated to Parkland, Florida, where a gunman opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, killing 17 people.

Nicholas J. Klein – – illustrative purposes only

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