Marfa, Texas - It took 10 months, but Alpine Station Assistant Patrol Agent in Charge Lewis Reynolds' plan for a memorial came to fruition on Sunday, September 11. Almost 700 people turned out for the unveiling of a twisted steel beam that had been carefully displayed as a reminder of the fateful 9/11 attacks.
Reynolds' plan resulted in a 4,300-mile trip to New York to pick up the World Trade Center artifact. He and Supervisory Border Patrol Agent David Marshall made the trip in a stake bed truck.
Upon their return to Alpine, they were greeted with a solemn cavalcade of law enforcement vehicles and a lot of hard work to prepare a resting place for the beam.
With the assistance of Field Operations Supervisor Brent Johnson and a number of off duty agents, Marfa Sector facilities maintenance personnel and retired Border Patrol agents, a concrete pad was poured. Lighting was installed and proper steel mount was constructed. The mount is surrounded by a beautifully welded aluminum pyramid.
Ironically, the ground breaking ceremony for the Alpine Station was held on the morning of September 11, 2001.
Brewster County Judge Val Beard was the keynote speaker for the unveiling ceremony. She was also present at the groundbreaking ceremony in 2001. During her speech she emphasized the importance of the Marfa Sector in the protection of the United States.
Chief Patrol Agent John J. Smietana Jr., gave the memorial address and reminded the audience that as the World Trade Center fell the Alpine Station was rising to provide a beacon for the security of our nation.
Reynolds described the monument as a symbol of the American people, "of our ability to rise above the adversity, to come together to defeat our enemies."
The memorial is on the grounds of the Alpine Station, and is open to the public. The station is located west of Alpine, Texas, on Highway 90.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.