The Power of Trees

Trees are powerful sentient beings who help mankind and ask for no reward, which is why this garden of trees is so fitting a memorial. Each tree in the Ringfinnan Garden of Remembrance grows for and bears the name of one firefighter or first responder lost during 9/11. There are 343 trees.

We visited the garden before we left Kinsale, Co Cork, Ireland in late July. Its creator, Kathleen Cait Murphy, was born in Kinsale but worked as a nurse for forty years in New York City at Lennox Hill Hospital. After 9/11, she decided to create the garden on her family land. It is dedicated to Father Mychal Judge, Chaplain in the New York Fire Department and personal friend of Kathleen. Though she lost her life to cancer on 29 March, 2011, the garden is still tended and is, in many ways, a tribute to the woman herself.

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Wandering through the lines of trees, I read the names, ranks, and positions of those who perished. It is a sad and sombre place on a soft rise that reaches out over the countryside. Some trees cradle weatherworn shirts in their branches.  Faded ballcaps adorn the monument. Over the past sixteen years, many families and friends have made a pilgrimage to this sacred place where memories live through the power of the trees.

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You can follow a map to the garden via Trip Advisor.

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