9/11 Firefighters Memorial Planned in Grapevine

A memorial to the hundreds of New York firefighters who died on Sept. 11 is taking shape in North Texas.

Organizers hope the tribute to the 343 firefighters who died can be ready by the next anniversary of 9/11.

"I'm proud of it, proud to be involved in all of it that I've done," said Dean Thompson, who designed the sculpture.

"… To go into a building that you're not so sure you're ever going to come back out of, or pretty positive you're not going to come back out of, takes a heck of a lot of bravery as far as I'm concerned," he said. "And then the cleanup afterwards -- these guys, they went through hell."

Thompson also created the 9/11 flight crew memorial in Grapevine at the urging of his wife, a flight attendant for American Airlines.

Joe Luccioni, a native New Yorker who now does volunteer work for the Grapevine Police Department, is leading the effort to install the firefighters memorial.

His daughter's fiance, Michael Lynch, was one of the firefighters killed on Sept. 11. Their wedding date was set for just two months later.

Lynch's picture has a place of honor inside Luccioni's home.

"I've got his picture here, and every day I walk by and [say], 'Hey. Mike.' … So he's not gone to me, you know, he's here. He's here all the time," Luccioni said.

He said he is also considering a memorial for the 72 New York police officers who died.

"So if I could do that, that would be a nice legacy to have, to leave," Luccioni said.

NBC 5's Kevin Cokely contributed to this report.

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