NEW DORP BEACH — A group of volunteers is building a memorial garden to remember Staten Island's Hurricane Sandy victims.
Around 120 volunteers from Yellow Boots, Timberland, the Parks Department and the local civic group started work at 9 a.m. to plant flowers and trees on a patch of land on Cedar Grove Avenue, in New Dorp Beach.
"This is to pay homage to those that we lost," said Mike Hoffman of Yellow Boots, who helped organize the planting.
The group expected to finish most of the work on the garden, between Topping Street and Maple Terrace, this week and will install an engraved boulder for victims on the one-year anniversary of the storm, Hoffman said.
He said that they chose a location central to every neighborhood hit by the storm.
"We want to bring a shot of adrenaline back to the community and back to Staten Island as a whole," Hoffman said.
The group put in 140 plants at the site. Hoffman said they chose to do it on 9/11 to remind people of how they came together during both tragedies.
For residents who regularly pass by the grounds, where the Cedar Grove Community Hub once stood, Hoffman said the garden will be better than just looking at the berms at New Dorp Beach.
"We've already gotten a lot of positive feedback just in the planning process alone," Hoffman said. "We had one resident come up that we've done work on his home while we did this, and it brought his wife to tears."