Nestled against Celera Creek, which cuts through a large piece of oceanfront commercial land vacant for 28 years, is Mike Mooney’s Liberty Garden.
Mooney, an Irish immigrant born more than 80 years ago in Dublin, bought and installed a garden bench (pictured) as a 9/11 memorial. It is engraved with the words “09-11-01 – We Shall Never Forget.”
The memorial is Mooney’s way of dealing with the grief he and the community felt following the terrorist attacks. Perhaps more remarkable than Mooney’s bench is the garden that gradually grew around it.
Fountain bush, hens and chicks, rose campion, silky thread grass and other plants cluster near a stone-embedded American flag, another symbol that honors the dead and memorializes one of the worst tragedies in American history. Pacifica volunteers, mainly from the Pacifica Garden Club, have planted everything around the memorial.
Although beautiful, the site serves as a target for vandals and thieves. Still, a paper sign mounted on wire reads “Plant Stealers Have No Shame” and Pacifica’s Liberty Garden continues to grow in proud defiance.
Today, on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, the above photo and story are featured on the Huffington Post. To find Pacifica's Liberty Garden, go to the story, which features hundreds of memories from 9/11 from around the country, and click on the 26th dot from the left in the photo browser. Mooney's garden will be at the top, second from the right.