On Sept. 9, two days before America marked the 15th anniversary of the devastating terrorist attacks that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people, Richard McCormack took several pictures of the Sept. 11 memorial lights at the site of the destroyed World Trade Center in New York City. He followed with his camera the beams of light representing the Twin Towers. At the very top of the beam where it meets the clouds, there appears a “human-like figure.” “I did a double-take not knowing really what it was, but as I zoomed in, it almost looked like a vision of the Lord with His arms crossed. I got very emotional and I got tears in my eyes,” McCormack told radio station New Jersey 101.5.
He told his social media friends that he took several pictures of the memorial lights, but the figure appeared in only one of them. McCormack swore he did not alter or edit the picture in any way. In fact, he said, he doesn’t even know how to use editing tools such as Photoshop. When he posted the image on his Facebook page three days after taking the picture, many people commented that they believe that what appeared was an angel. At least one person who was also looking at the memorial lights the same time McCormack took pictures of them recalled seeing an “angel” at the top of the beam.
“Yup. It’s an angel. Noticed it last night driving on the parkway,” Diane Brennan commented on the image. Other Facebook users said they believe the image is that of an angel or Jesus. One of them, Yvette Cid, wrote, “Rich I know you don’t photo shop that’s an awesome pic wow I lost my two boys and I believe this is a sign to all that have lost a love one.”
Nancy Diaz, another commenter, wrote: “It looks like there’s someone up there looking down.”
McCormack said although he took the photos on Sept. 9, he didn’t notice the surreal image until three days later. He said had he seen it on Sunday, the 9/11 anniversary date, he would’ve been even more emotional. He said many people could assume that the photo was edited or that other non-spiritual factors, like the shape of the clouds, could have produced that image atop the beam.
However, he said he cannot offer any rational explanation on what appeared on the picture he took. He is content on knowing though that many people found a sense of comfort in seeing the photo.