September 11 marks a dark day in our nation’s history, that much is obvious and probably never needs to be said again. Or does it?
I was somewhat surprised at the lack of 9/11 remembrance ceremonies in the area this past week. The Anna Fire Department held one, and I know there was one in Lowry Crossing with some local departments, but as far as I could tell that was it.
This is troubling.
In my generation and my sons’ generation, 9/11 stands out as the darkest of dark days. It is sort of cliche`, but we all remember where we were when those jets struck the towers in New York. I was in the newsroom at the sports desk of the paper I worked for when the first report came in of a problem at one of the Twin Towers in New York. Early speculation was that a plane had lost control and flown into the building. Just as the guesses are flying about, the next jet streaked across the tv screen and the rest is history.
There are plenty of people and events we need to remember in this country. Those lost protecting our interests overseas, those fallen in wars past, and for the most part I feel we as a community do a good job of this. But I’m surprised that 9/11 doesn’t warrant a remembrance ceremony in every community. This was a brazen attack on American soil that has fundamentally changed the way we travel and even in some respects the way we live. It claimed thousands of lives and remains the deadliest ever in the history of United States firefighters.
The attacks on the towers in New York were only part of the plan for the terrorists as the had coordinated a third plane to fly its suicide mission into the Pentagon, taking out part of the west wall.
And let’s not forget the brave souls of Flight 93 who prevented further loss of innocent lives by sacrificing their own. After four hijackers overtook the airliner, passengers learned of the coordinated attack on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. They charged the cockpit, eventually forcing the jet to crash before it could hit its intended target, which was believed by the 9/11 Commission to have been the U.S. Capitol.
The remains of Flight 93, including headstones marking the final resting spot for 33 passengers and seven crew members, rest in a field in Somerset County Pennsylvania.
All told, the attacks took nearly 3,000 innocent lives.
So, let’s not forget, and let’s do a better job next year of remembering those who fell.