NEW YORK — On Thursday, Lady Liberty was once again ready to face the masses yearning for a closer look at one of America’s most iconic figures.
Hurricane Sandy forced Lady Liberty’s closing just a day after her 126th anniversary. While the statue itself emerged unscathed, storm surge socked almost three-quarters of Liberty Island, leaving bricks ripped up, docks destroyed and debris everywhere.
Adding insult to injury, the statue had just reopened the day before the storm after a year of renovations.
The 305′ tall statue was a gift from France symbolizing the friendship between the two countries and their shared love of liberty.
Dedicated in 1886 after 10 years of construction, the statue boasts more than 3 1/2 million visitors every year.
Park officials worked around the clock to make sure the island reopened in time for this Independence Day.
“Coming here and seeing visitors from all over the world standing out in front with tears in their eyes with excitement, she’s not only our statue she’s the world’s statue,” Statue of Liberty Superintendent David Luchsinger said.