I decided to go to the Oklahoma City Memorial and Museum a few weeks back, mostly out of my curiosity of what they built. I hadn’t planned on going to the museum portion, for fear that it would be too emotional. An older couple had received free passes that they couldn’t use, so they offered them to me. I decided to go inside.
First of all, the memorial that was built is absolutely beautiful. I teared up while reading the quote on the gate, then again at the Memorial Wall, just to start.
After walking through a slight introduction to the day the bombing occurred, some history of the memorial and museum, etc. they put you in a dark room and play the recording of a meeting that started at 9:00am on April 19, 1995 across the street from the Murrah Building. At 9:02am, a large explosion is heard, people start screaming and the wall in front of us lit up with the 168 faces of those who died in the bombing. And like that, I was crying again. The museum is incredible. It’s filled with artifacts discovered in the rubble; glasses, briefcases, kids’ shoes (yep, cried again), each one highlighted with the victim’s name. There’s also news coverage from around the world, video interviews with the survivors and a fully detailed timeline of the moment the bomb went off all the way through to Timothy McVeigh’s arrest and eventual execution.
It’s very emotional, but also very educational. I remember the bombing and I remember sending paper cranes to the families of the victims. If you’re ever in OKC and you don’t have plans the rest of the day, or maybe just don’t wear mascara… Go to the museum. It’s very interesting and the memorial is very beautifully done.
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