NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - A Never Forget memorial that sits in Eisenhower Park in East Meadow, New York, is meant to remember those lost on September 11. But some say it's already being forgotten.
"To see it degrade like this... it's heartbreaking," said retired FDNY firefighter Ray Pfeifer. He worked the pile in the days, weeks and months following 9/11 and today is battling stage-4 cancer. He says missing tiles, chain-link fencing and chipping paint is no way to remember more than 300 Nassau County residents who were killed.
"It's going to be 15 years and it's degraded like this?" he said. "It's not right."
Ray said last year when Nassau County held its remembrance ceremony he noticed signs of wear and tear. While the county said winter takes a toll on outside facilities, Ray said it's inexcusable.
"You build something for life you would think you would have some sort of program to keep it together," he said.
Work is being done on the memorial. The county said it has spent more than $500,000 in maintenance since it was built nearly a decade ago. The county said the memorial was constructed using "substandard materials," and does cleanup work every spring.
Minority Democratic Leader Kevan Abrahams said the work should be done year-round.
"This is something that should be treated with the utmost respect as well as priority and not be neglected," Abrahams said. "It should've been caught much, much sooner by our parks supervisor than ever before."
People we spoke to agree.
County officials said they plan to invest additional funds to improve the memorial.