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Teaching lessons, honoring the victims and responders of 9/11

The 9/11 Museum at Ground Zero in New York is unlike any other museum you've visited. Its skeleton includes parts of the Twin Towers that survived.

NEW YORK — The museum part of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum at Ground Zero is full of pieces of history that literally takes you back to Sept. 11, 2001.

Most of it is under where the Twin Towers stood. A wall that once kept water from the Hudson River out of the buildings is now a wall of the museum.

The exhibits tell stories about the horror, sadness and heroism of that day. There's a smashed fire engine from Ladder Company 3, one of first on the scene.

Along with artifacts, recordings of emergency calls, photos and video, the exhibits teach us about the sacrifice of the firefighters and other first responders. They ran up the stairs and didn't survive, so that thousands of people coming down the stairs would.

Credit: Gary Shapiro

There's a piece of a TV and radio tower on display. It once stood atop the North Tower.

It teaches us about the bravery of everyday people doing everyday things. Steven Jacobson, an engineer for New York station WPIX, and other workers kept the tower operating after the plane hit the building, so TV stations could stay on the air to report on the tragedy.

Jacobson was killed when the building fell.

Credit: Gary Shapiro

So many lessons are taught by so many steel beams and scraps of history.

The museum has an educational staff to provide curriculum and materials for school teachers across the country. They also do online seminars and classes to teach people about what happened that day and why.

The 9/11 Memorial & Museum has launched The Never Forget Fund to support its educational programs, particularly for the next generation that doesn’t remember 9/11 firsthand.

Credit: Gary Shapiro

When you leave the museum, you walk past a giant wall, made up of 2,983 blue tiles, each a different shade of blue.

Each tile represents a person killed in the attacks that day. It's an art exhibit called "Trying to Remember the Color of the Sky on That September Morning."

It includes the quote "No Day shall Erase You From the Memory of Time". Another lesson learned at this unique museum.

Credit: Gary Shapiro

Editors note: This story is part of 9NEWS' "Remember the Sky: 20 Years After 9/11" series, in which Gary Shapiro is examining the lasting impacts from the terrorist attacks on Coloradans. Watch the special at 6 p.m. Saturday on 9NEWS or later at 9NEWS.COM.

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