(New York, NY) -- Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the new National September 11th Memorial and Museum in New York City is a monument to resilience, courage, and compassion. Bloomberg spoke at the dedication ceremony for the museum this morning. He was joined by President Obama, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie and several other officials and survivors of the attack on September 11th, 2001. The museum features artifacts from that fateful day, including twisted beams of steel and a fire engine that was heavily damaged when the towers fell.

At this morning's ceremony, Obama said the museum also includes a red handkerchief belonging to Welles Crowther, who died in the collapse of the South Tower. Obama remarked that several people were led to safety by a man wearing a red handkerchief over his nose and mouth. Months after the attack, Crowther's mother realized that the hero described by several survivors was her son. Obama remarked that after the planes hit, the 24-year-old volunteer firefighter put on his bandanna and spent the final moments of his life saving others.

The dedication ceremony also included a group of firefighters who managed to escape the rubble of the North Tower after it collapsed. One of them, retired FDNY lieutenant Mickey Kross, said a narrow beam of sunlight was enough to let them know there was a way out of their trapped situation. After Kross escaped, he remained at the World Trade Center site to do search and recovery missions.

The museum will open to the general public next week.

(Photo: Pool / 2014 Getty Images)