Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg was among 60 guests who were “drinking, eating and laughing” at an invitation only opening party at the new 9/11 museum.
A group of VIPs have been accused of “desecrating” the graves of September 11 victims after holding a booze fueled party over where they lay.
The site contains the remains of 1,115 unidentified victims.
It recently opened to the public, but was turned into a lavish private club on Tuesday night, claiming they needed to close early for maintenance, even though witnesses described seeing individuals in black tie affair attire.
Some first responders, who helped to save victims of the attacks had been given free entry to the museum before the official opening, and literally were turned away from the party.
As part of the party organizers transformed the information desk on the lower level in to a makeshift bar.
The Mirror reports:
“A group of firefighters left the site in tears after being told their tour was being cut short.”
One of those refused admission was a New York Police officer and his wife.
“They were drinking, eating and laughing when this is pretty much a gravesite,” an unnamed employee told the New York Daily news.
“I don’t think alcohol should be allowed in there. It’s a sacred ground and they desecrated it.”
Billionaire Bloomberg and magazine executives from Condé Nast reportedly feasted on crab cakes and shrimp cocktail hors d’oeuvres at the black tie ceremony to mark the opening of the museum.
Guests partied close to exhibits including photos of people falling from the Towers, voice mail messages from people in hijacked planes and videos of the buildings collapsing.
However despite the tone of the museum workers at the event described the mood as “festive”.
John Feal, a 9/11 responder and who runs a support group, was outraged by the party.
“Everyone who lost a loved one in 9/11 should be outraged, Shame on the museum.”
Diane Horning, who lost her son in the 2001 attack, said:
“Here is essentially our tomb of the unknown, To sell baubles I find quite shocking and repugnant, To me, it’s the crassest, most insensitive thing to have a commercial enterprise at the place where my son died, I think it’s a money-making venture to support inflated salaries, and they’re willing to do it over my son’s dead body.”