A couple weeks ago when we were in Oklahoma, we decided to take some time out to visit the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum. We were close by after a long day in Bricktown and thought it was important we pay remembrance to those who lost their lives that day.
Upon arriving, the first thing we saw was the fence where people still to this day remember their loved ones by leaving tokens of their love. There are cards, stuffed animals, pictures and more.
The bombing on April 19th, 1995 destroyed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. In it’s place they now have the gates of time, the two entrances to the memorial and a reflection pool which was once a street. The reflection pool is so peaceful.
Then they also have the field of empty chairs. This symbolizes the lives lost due to this horrendous act and is arranged in rows, standing for each floor. Immediately I noticed the 2nd floor and it took my breath away. The day care was on that floor. I cannot even imagine.
There is a beautiful tree they call the survivor tree, the survivor wall inscribed with names which were salvaged pieces of granite from the lobby after the bombing. There is much more!
We did not get the chance to visit it all but there is a museum that is an interactive learning experience. You take a self guided tour and hear the story of what happened that day.
Here are the chapters you’ll go through (according to the pamphlet we got):
- Chapter 1- Mission of the Memorial & Museum and Background on Terrorism
- Chapter 2- History of the Site
- Chapter 3A- A Hearing (a meeting going on across the street at the time of the bombing)
- Chapter 3B- Confusion
- Chapter 4A- Chaos
- Chapter 4B- Survivor Experiences
- Chapter 5A- World Reaction
- Chapter 5B- Rescue and Recovery
- Chapter 6- Watching and Waiting
- Chapter 7A- Gallery of Honor
- Chapter 7B- Funerals and Mournings
- Chapter 8- Impact
- Chapter 9- Behind the Scene: The OK Bomb Investigation
- Chapter 10- Hope
And there is quite a bit more. I think the next time we are in OKC we are going to try to visit the museum as well.
Have you ever been to the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum?