The Medina Rotary Club has been keeping a secret for years, and on July 28, a masterpiece Memorial that’s been in the making since 2009 will finally be unveiled to the public. 

At the time, Kelly Low was president of Medina Rotary Club, which is actually one of two Rotary Clubs in the city. Other notable members at the time included Bill “Banner Bill” Cohen and former Mayor Jane Leaver. As Mayor Leaver was approaching the end of her tenure, she asked Bill if the Medina Rotary Club
could put together an “entrance to the city” welcome sign with placards of community service groups and listings of churches. Bill said he would make it happen. 

About a month later, Cohen spotted an ad in the Wall Street Journal that changed the course of the project. 

”The ad said that if you were a nonprofit or government entity, you could apply for a piece of steel from the Twin Towers,” recalls Dr. Kelly Low. She speaks with a combination of passion and solemnity as she continues, “The application offered no guarantee that we would receive a remnant, and it offered no hints as to what size it would be.” 

After 3 pages of paperwork and several months of waiting, Low was contacted informing her that the Medina Rotary had been selected to receive a remnant, and she was ecstatic. 

”I asked her if she could FedEx it, and she laughed. I thought to myself, ‘Well, maybe I could just take my dad’s pickup truck to get it.’ It was at JFK airport in New York, which I thought was a reasonable drive.” 

That was when she found out that the remnant weighed a ton and a half, stretching over 9 feet in length. In fact, it was 9’3″ long, 31 inches tall and 2 feet wide. The fragment was an I-beam from the North Tower, and each bolt featured a massive 2-inch-wide head. 

”There are kids today who weren’t alive during 9/11, and for many of them the event has been reduced to a paragraph in their history books,” laments Low. “But for those of us that were alive, that day will never leave you. We wanted to help future generations understand where we’ve come since then. For many of us, this day changed our life and our worldview. Because of that, we knew we wanted to use the remnant to build a memorial that could be used as an educational destination and also as a site for solemn reflection.” 

There were now two questions. First, what direct links does Medina County have with 9/11? Flight 93, you may recall, flew over our heads in the southern parts of the county shortly before crashing in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Second, where would such a monument go? 

After years of searching and the unfortunate passing of key players Cohen and Leaver, the Medina Rotary Club found the perfect site for the memorial: the property next to Fire Station # 1 on North Huntington Street. Though it is not quite an entrance, as Leaver had originally envisioned, the site pays homage to first responders who were involved in 9/11. And, she notes, it’s only one block away from the offices of Medina County Veterans Services. 

”You can see where it burned, and you see where it twisted,” she says of the remnant. “This piece of metal…. it’s unbelievable. It is so humbling to see this massive piece of metal that was just a tiny part of the North Tower.” 

Before July, the Medina Rotary Club is working to raise $100,000 to build the monument and manage future maintenance needs. A GoFundMe page is currently up and running, and a paver program and sponsorships will be offered. Other fundraisers will be announced soon, so stay tuned for updates. 

”We will also offer to every school building in Medina County the opportunity to have a first responder or Veteran in uniform attend the school with the actual beam and provide a talk about the events of 9/11,” she says. “Tragedy temporarily brought unity. On that day, differences in appearance and lifestyle were put aside. On that day were were all Americans, and we had to pull through it together.” 

The Medina Rotary Club hopes that the memorial will continue to inspire unity here in our community. All questions and comments or suggestions should be directed to Dr. Kelly Low at  330.607.8670 or