Directions to the 9/11 Memorial: Heading into Lake Charles from I-10 East, take the exit onto Lakeshore Drive and continue until you reach Bord du Lac Drive where you will exit right at the Civic Center. Continue on Bord du Lac Drive along the lakefront until you reach the Memorial located on the south end of the Civic Center grounds. Heading into Lake Charles from I-10 West, take the Ryan Street exit, on Ryan Street, drive to Clarence Street and take a right. On Clarence, drive several blocks going west. You will cross over Lakeshore Drive and Clarence will turn into Bord du Lac Drive. Continue on and directly ahead will be the Memorial at the lakefront.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks on America, the City of Lake Charles acquired two World Trade Center beams from the City of New York and one slab of Pentagon limestone from the U.S. Government. The Lake Charles Fire Department escorted these materials to the Civic Center to be used in a memorial honoring those who lost their lives that day. After several public meetings, local artists designed the Memorial using ideas generated by people from the community. A local architect assisted with the plans for construction while community volunteers worked to raise the necessary funds. The World Trade Center beams rise from a reflecting pool and visitors may touch one of the beams from the walkway. Each piece of glass embedded in the "Ribbon of Souls" represents one of the lives lost in the attacks. Earth tones represent the World Trade Center; blue, the Pentagon; and green; the Pennsylvania field. The clay tiles contain fingerprint impressions made by people from the community and silently communicate that 9/11 touched all of our lives. Engraved in the Pentagon limestone are the names of a Lake Charles native and a Sulphur native who died during the attacks. The 9/11 Memorial provides a serene setting for meditation and reflection. It is a quiet place to remember the catastrophic events of September 11 and pay tribute to the lives lost that day. It stands as a testimony to the strength of the American character and to the principles of liberty and justice that bind us together as a free nation.