A new memorial commemorating 9/11 was unveiled Wednesday in Woodbridge, Va. News4's Northern Virginia Bureau reporter David Culver was on hand for the unveiling.
A Virginia community came together to dedicate the country's newest memorial commemorating the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
Four pieces of steel from the World Trade Center were hoisted and welded into place as centerpiece to the County Complex in Woodbridge, Va. It leads to an already-existing 9/11 memorial.
Twenty-two Prince William County residents died in 9/11. Woodbridge resident Laurie Laychak's husband, David Laychak, was one of them.
"I'm fortunate, I only live about a mile away from [the memorial]," Laychak said. "So I drive by almost everyday."
Laychak said her husband was her best friend.
"And he was a great father," she said. "My kids were 7 and 9 when we lost him."
Her husband was a civilian working in the Pentagon.
"We kept calling all the hospitals in the area, seeing if they had anybody that they hadn't identified," Laychak said.
A few days passed before Laychak knew for sure David wasn't coming home.
"That's when I had to sit down and tell my children ... [it] was the worst moment of my entire life and always will be," Laychak said.
Wednesday, she was overwhelmed by the latest addition to the county's 9/11 memorial -- a monument erected out of steel from Ground Zero.
"It's kind of nice to have a piece of the World Trade Center, right here, to help link us together," she said.
The steel was in storage for about two years before crews moved it onto its current site in June. In early September, workers welded the structure into place.
Prince William County Board of Supervisors Chairman Corey Stewart acknowledges the monument is striking and raw.
"History is not all pretty," Stewart said. "This isn't supposed to be pretty. What this is supposed to be is a very stark reminder of that day, about the people we lost and we also want to make it accessible. We want children and everyone else to be able to walk right up to the memorial and touch it and feel it."
Laychak hopes the memorial will serve as a necessary reminder.
"My worst nightmare is for something like [September 11] would happen again," she said. "I just don't want us to forget this so that we don't have other families suffer they way our family has."