The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building was a United States Government complex and the target of the Oklahoma City bombing. On the morning of April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh parked a rented Ryder truck with explosives in front of the complex and, at 9:02am, a massive explosion occurred which sheared the entire north side of the building, killing 168 people.
Following an investigation and recovery of victims' bodies, the surviving structure was demolished with explosives on May 23, 1995. The site later became home to the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum.
Just as the world responded from near and far to assist Oklahoma City in the aftermath of the bombing, the Oklahoma City National Memorial searched near and far for the finest materials possible with which to build.
From the street, the Memorial’s most striking features are the Gates of Time. The gates are clad with a “naval” and “yellow” bronze. The panels were milled in Japan shipped to New Jersey where they were finished, and eventually to Oklahoma City for installation.
The black granite within both Gates of Time and on the Reflecting Pool surface was quarried in Quebec, Canada. Pathway flagstones are from West Central Arkansas.
The large natural sandstone benches positioned around the Memorial grounds are from LeFlore County in Eastern Oklahoma.
The Memorial Chairs, in honor of the 168 people who were killed, were fabricated in different parts of the country. The glass bases were cast at John Lewis Glass Studio in Oakland, California. The bronze backs were cast at A.R.K. Ramos in Oklahoma City.
The granite panels on which the Survivors’ names are etched were salvaged from the Murrah Building. The granite stones that make up the granite path around the Field of Empty Chairs are from the plaza.
The Memorial remembers “those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever” by the 1995 bombing. It includes an Outdoor Symbolic Memorial, open 24 hours each day at no charge, and the Memorial Museum, open 9-6 Monday through Saturday and 1-6 Sunday. Admission to the Museum is $7 for adults, $6 for seniors 62-plus and $5 for students & children under 12. For more info, call 405. 235.3313 go to www.oklahomacitynationlamemorial.org.
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