(CNN) — The National September 11 Memorial opens to the public Monday — a decade and a day after terror attacks brought down the twin towers of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan.

The memorial opened a day early on Sunday only to victims’ family members and those attending the commemoration service at ground zero.

“We’re so proud of this memorial,” said Monica Iken, who lost her husband Michael in the attacks. “I can go see Michael. He’s home.”

Iken founded the group September’s Mission and has played an instrumental role in the construction of the site.

Iken said she comes to the site to connect with her husband. “Every time I come here, I feel the energy. It’s powerful,” she said.

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