Seven and a Half Tons of Steel by Janet Nolan
Thomas Gonzalez (Illustrations)
There is a ship, a navy ship. It is called the USS New York. It is big like other navy ships, and it sails like other navy ships, but there is something special about the USS New York. Following the events of September 11, 2001, the governor of New York gave the Navy a steel beam that was once inside one of the World Trade Towers. The beam was driven from New York to a foundry in Louisiana. Metal workers heated the beam to a high, high temperature. Chippers and grinders, painters and polishers worked on the beam for months. And then, seven and a half tons of steel, which had once been a beam in the World Trade Center, became a navy ships bow. This powerful story reveals how something remarkable can emerge from a devastating event.
What I Thought
I had no idea that a beam from one of the World Trade Tower was used as the USS New York’s bow. How amazing is that?
I can’t remember the blog where I first saw this book, sorry. As soon as I read what it was about, I knew I wanted to read it, and I’m glad I did. The story is full of information about how the beam became a ships bow and the illustrations are great. I loved reading how that beam traveled from New York to a foundry in Louisiana and how all the different workers tuned it into a bow for the ship. I learned about that many workers lost their homes during Hurricane Katrina, and how Kamp Katrina allowed them to finish the job.
This book brought back a lot of memories and gave me the leaky eyes. But that’s ok, I want those memories to stay with me. So many lives were lost or changed forever that day. This country came together like I’d never seen before and haven’t since. This book should be required reading for elementary schools. The target reader is Grades 3-5, but I highly recommend it to anyone of any age.