A Day To Commemorate The Day Most Of Us Will Never Forget

Dated: 09/15/2016

Views: 271

I saw this article written by Ed Beckley for the Outer Banks Voice and thought you would appreciate reading about this solemn tribute.

When they played the National Anthem at the Sep. 11 Commemorative Ceremony in Nags Head, nobody stayed seated or took a knee. And when they released the doves while every police car and fire truck sounded-off tribute, attendees dabbed tears with tissues.

On a hot summer day that felt like 100 degrees under bright sunshine and no cloud cover, some 200 people filled the seats to standing room at the Soundside Event Site. They joined police and firefighters from two counties in honor of those who died in the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania.

The event flyer noted 2,977 lost their lives that day. Of that number, 2,195 civilians were in the World Trade Center twin towers; 411 first responders died trying to save them; 343 were firefighters. There were 37 Port Authority officers, 23 police officers, eight emergency medical technicians and paramedics. In the Pentagon, there were 125; 70 were civilians and 55 were military.

Eighty-seven were aboard American Airlines Flight II; 60 were aboard United Airlines Flight 175; 59 aboard American Airlines Flight 77 and 40 on United Airlines Flight 93. And “Zero will be forgotten.”

Official participants included Leslie Ericson and the students of Club Violin, and when they played the National Anthem, those in attendance sang it aloud.

Kelli Harmon of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) welcomed everyone. The Rev. Phil Glick of St. Andrews-By-The-Sea Episcopal church rendered the invocation and benediction. The VFW’s Jim Norrell led the Pledge of Allegiance, and guest speaker Doug Doughtie, Dare County sheriff, reminisced where he was on that fateful day (near Virginia Beach), and how it stirred him when he witnessed military jets scrambling after the attacks.

Kill Devil Hills Fire Department Chief, retired, Doug Penland and Carl Reiber of the American Legion and Dare County Veteran’s Advisory Council, also spoke, then dozens of doves took flight in hopes of peace for the nation.

The words of George W. Bush, who was President of the United States at that time, were published and distributed: “Terrorist attacks can shake the foundations of our biggest buildings, but they cannot touch the foundation of America. These acts shatter steel, but they cannot dent the steel of American resolve. America was targeted for attack because we’re the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world.”

As the doves circled the field, a phalanx of police cars and fire trucks went to lights and sirens, and tears flowed. And as the ceremony ended, attendees took the time to shake the hands of all the firefighters and police on site, and just say thank you for keeping them safe.

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Kathleen Argiroff

Kathleen relocated to the Outer Banks of North Carolina with her husband and three children in 1989 from the Philadelphia and Stone Harbor, NJ areas. One of her greatest pleasures is introducing peopl....

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