Stop Signs Tell Story of 1993 WTC Bombing

A heavily damaged red stop sign destroyed in the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center is displayed on a white surface at the Museum.
Photo of stop sign. Collection 9/11 Memorial Museum, Gift of Justin M. Spivey.

On a snowy Friday in February 1993, amid reports of a transformer explosion at the World Trade Center, Cooper Union freshmen, Gregory Miller and Justin Spivey decided to investigate the scene themselves. Surrounded by twisted metal on the ground near the ramp to the World Trade Center parking garage, they spotted two mangled STOP signs, punctured with holes and bent at the edges.

Emerging from the Cortlandt Street subway station, Miller and Spivey witnessed the mayhem of smoke-stained survivors charging away from the World Trade Center and the determination of first responders. Unaware of what happened at 12:18 p.m. that afternoon and that they were entering a crime scene, the college freshmen retrieved the signs, doubtful of their significance.

Miller and Spivey returned to school that afternoon, learning later of the updated reports of a truck-bomb explosion in the parking garage beneath the North Tower.

Both stop signs were donated and are part of the 9/11 Memorial & Museum’s collection.

By 9/11 Memorial Staff

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