WASHINGTON – Three Congressional Gold Medals were awarded today in honor of the men and women who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001. The ceremony took place in Emancipation Hall in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.
The United States Mint prepared and struck the three gold medals—one each for the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Flight 93 in rural Pennsylvania—in accordance with the authorizing legislation, Public Law 112-76, the Fallen Heroes of 9/11 Act. Each medal bears a unique design.
The New York Medal
The medal’s obverse (heads side) features an abstract representation of two towers. The abstract lines flowing downward symbolize loss while the lines moving upward represent rising above, hope, and deliverance from that loss. This configuration also suggests the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers. The numbers 93, 77, 175, and 11 represent the four planes involved in the tragic events of 9/11 and are positioned as if on a clock, representing the times of the crashes. The words “Always Remember” are set upon a stone wall similar to the wall that bears the names of the victims at the memorial.
The reverse (tails side) features a single rose protruding from an edge at the top, an echo of the memorial in New York where a white rose is placed through the name of each victim on his or her birthday. The inscription reads: WE HONOR THE THOUSANDS OF INNOCENT PEOPLE FROM MORE THAN 90 COUNTRIES LOST AT THE WORLD TRADE CENTER IN THE ATTACKS THAT SHOOK THE WORLD ON SEPTEMBER 11, 2001. MAY THEIR MEMORY INSPIRE AN END TO INTOLERANCE. The design also includes a bald eagle standing sentinel and clasping branches of laurel signifying an eternal honoring of those who perished in the tragedies.
The obverse of the World Trade Center Fallen Heroes’ medal was designed by Artistic Infusion Program artist Joel Iskowitz and executed by United States Mint Sculptor-Engraver Jim Licaretz. The reverse was designed and executed by United States Mint Sculptor-Engraver Phebe Hemphill.
The Pentagon Medal
The medal’s obverse depicts the rebuilt façade of the Pentagon where Flight 77 crashed. The angle of view is the angle of the flight path. A single candle and a small bouquet of flowers and greens signify a sacred memorial at the site. The American flag flies overhead in a united and patriotic embrace.
The reverse features 184 stars on a raised border around the edge of the design, one star for each of the victims of the tragedy. The inscription reads: WE HONOR THOSE ON FLIGHT 77 AND THOSE IN THE PENTAGON WHO PERISHED ON SEPTEMBER 11, 2001. WE WILL NEVER FORGET THEIR SACRIFICE AS WE UNITE IN MEMORY. The design also features a bald eagle standing sentinel and clasping branches of laurel signifying an eternal honoring of those who perished in the tragedies.
The obverse and reverse of the Pentagon medal were designed and executed by Ms. Hemphill.
The Flight 93 Medal
The medal’s obverse features the hemlock groves behind the boulder at the Flight 93 Memorial, a simple reminder of loss and healing.
The reverse features 40 stars on a raised border around the edge of the design, one star for each victim. The inscription is WE HONOR THE PASSENGERS AND CREW OF FLIGHT 93 WHO PERISHED ON A PENNSYLVANIA FIELD ON SEPTEMBER 11, 2001. THEIR COURAGEOUS ACTION WILL BE REMEMBERED FOREVER. The design also features a bald eagle standing sentinel and clasping branches of laurel signifying an eternal honoring of those who perished in the tragedies.
The obverse of the Flight 93 medal was designed and executed by United States Mint Sculptor- Engraver Joseph Menna, and the reverse was designed and executed by Ms. Hemphill.
Public Law 112-76, which requires the United States Mint to strike the Fallen Heroes of 9/11 Congressional Gold Medal, also authorizes the bureau to strike and sell bronze reproductions of the medals. The medals will be available for purchase beginning noon Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) Sept. 11, 2014, via the bureau’s online catalog at http://www.usmint.gov/catalog and at 1-800-USA- MINT (872-6468). Hearing and speech-impaired customers with TTY equipment may call 1-888-321-MINT (6468). The three-inch medals—product codes FH1 (New York Medal), FH3 (Flight 93 Medal), FH5 (Pentagon Medal)—will be priced at $39.95.