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  • Writer's pictureCharlie Lopez

United States Commemorates 22nd Anniversary of 9/11 Terrorist Attacks


On the 22nd anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, Americans across the nation commemorated the solemn occasion with moments of reflection, tears, and a collective call to ensure younger generations understand the significance of that tragic day.


Edward Edelman, who arrived at New York's World Trade Center to pay tribute to his late brother-in-law, Daniel McGinley, poignantly expressed, "For those of us who lost people on that day, that day is still happening. Everybody else moves on. And you find a way to go forward, but that day is always happening for you."


President Joe Biden, during his visit to a military base in Anchorage, Alaska, en route to Washington from India and Vietnam, encouraged Americans to unite in safeguarding democracy. His presence highlighted that the impact of 9/11 resonated throughout the entire nation.


"We know that on this day, every American's heart was wounded," Biden stated. "Yet every big city, small town, suburb, rural town, tribal community — American hands went up, ready to help where they could."


The devastating attacks on September 11, 2001, claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people when hijacked planes struck the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a Pennsylvania field. This event not only reshaped American foreign policy but also instilled deep-seated concerns within the nation.


On that fateful day, Eddie Ferguson, the fire-rescue chief in Goochland County, Virginia, noted, "We were one country, one nation, one people, just like it should be."


Goochland County, a predominantly rural area of 25,000 residents, pays tribute to 9/11 victims through a dedicated memorial, holding two separate commemorations—one honoring first responders and the other remembering all the victims.


At Ground Zero in New York, Vice President Kamala Harris joined other dignitaries for a ceremony on the National September 11 Memorial plaza. This event featured victims reading the names of the deceased and sharing brief personal messages. Some messages conveyed patriotic sentiments about American values, gratitude to first responders and the military, and acknowledgment of the lives lost during the post-9/11 "War on Terror."


First Lady Jill Biden laid a wreath at the 9/11 memorial at the Pentagon, where a large American flag hung over the side of the building. Bells tolled, and musicians played taps at 9:37 a.m., marking the time when one of the hijacked jets struck the military headquarters.


President Biden, highlighting the continued threat of extremism and political violence, emphasized that "every generation has to fight" to preserve U.S. democracy. He urged vigilance, noting that terrorists targeted the nation for its freedom, openness, and institutions.


In Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Doug Emhoff, Vice President Harris' husband, laid a wreath at the Flight 93 National Memorial. This site commemorates the passengers who bravely attempted to regain control of the hijacked plane before it crashed. At the memorial, Rabbi


Jeffrey Myers from Pittsburgh's Tree of Life synagogue, which had experienced a deadly shooting in 2018, emphasized the importance of passing down the memory of 9/11 to younger generations.


Across the nation, Americans engaged in volunteer work on Patriot Day and the National Day of Service and Remembrance, as designated by Congress. Many participated in anniversary events at memorials, firehouses, city halls, campuses, and other locations.


Reflecting the magnitude of the tragedy, Pepperdine University's campus in California displayed American flags for each victim, along with the flags of every other country that lost a citizen on 9/11. Dennis Francis, President of the United Nations General Assembly, called on nations worldwide to combat extremism, promote tolerance, and unite against such acts.


In Fenton, Missouri, a small community far from the attack sites, Mayor Joe Maurath emphasized the importance of remembering not only 9/11 but all events that contribute to freedom. The town held an anniversary ceremony at a memorial containing steel from the World Trade Center and a plaque honoring Jessica Leigh Sachs, a 9/11 victim with ties to the community.


Maurath aptly summarized their commitment: "We're just a little bitty community, but it's important for us to continue to remember these events. Not just 9/11, but all of the events that make us free."

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