Several remembrance ceremonies will be held in the DC area on the anniversary of 9-11.
Wednesday marks 18 years since nearly three thousand people were killed in the September 11th terror attacks. The Pentagon Memorial will be honoring those who died when American Airlines Flight 77 smashed into the Pentagon in Arlington.
Along with the traditional changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Arlington National Cemetery will hold a moment of silence at 9:37 a.m. That’s the exact time when the plane hit the building.
Arlington County, Alexandria, Great Falls in Fairfax County and Purcellville in Loudoun County will all be holding events to remember those who lost their lives in the attack.
Locally, there are also several 9/11 events happening today around the Portland Metro area.
In Southwest Washington those lost as a result of the September 11th terrorist attacks will be remembered and honored at Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue’s memorial located at 701 Vine street in Kelso. This ceremony memorializes the loss at the actual time the attacks started and begins at 6:45am. Each year, since 2001, Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue’s Honor Guard has raised the American Flag and then lowered it to half-staff while Fire Chief Dave LaFave reflects on sacrifices made by first responders. Chief LaFave says, “This ceremony is held early in the morning for a reason; the inconvenience to stand out here one morning a year to remember their sacrifice, at the time they perished, is the least we can do.” A steel artifact from the World Trade Center, released by the Port Authority of New York/New Jersey, is the center piece of the memorial. Only 1,000 steel artifacts have been released for memorials throughout the United States. Development of the memorial began in the Fall of 2009 by Cowlitz 2 Firefighter Brad Yoder and a number of high school fire cadets. The memorial is always open to the public to remember or to “never forget.”
A little bit later you’re invited to another ceremony at Vancouver City Hall that starts at 9am. The Community Military Appreciation Committee (CMAC), in partnership with the City of Vancouver, invites the public to attend a special Patriot Day ceremony at Vancouver City Hall in remembrance of all those who lost their lives during the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The event, sponsored by CMAC and Waste Connections, starts at 9 a.m. in front of City Hall, 415 W. 6th St., Vancouver. The ceremony will include the Vancouver Fire Honor Guard and Piper, musical performances, a ceremonial Vancouver Fire Department bell ringing, Vancouver Veterans of Foreign Wars rifle salute, and remarks by Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle, Vancouver Fire Department Division Chief Tom O’Connor, and Vancouver Police Assistant Chief Mike Lester. A community wreath will be laid at the national flagpole in front of City Hall in honor of all first responders and civilians who lost their lives on that day, and 51 doves, led by the spirit dove, will be released in honor of our states.
Then at 11am in Portland, there will be a ceremony near downtown. Portland Firefighters Association, Portland Fire & Rescue, surrounding communities and family members will come together for a public ceremony at the Eastbank Esplanade, SE 5 Madison St. near Fire Station 21, honoring fallen heroes of 9/11. “Our members believe it’s our duty and honor every year to pay tribute to the men and women who lost their lives eighteen years ago trying to save others, “ says Alan Ferschweiler, president of the Portland Firefighters Association. Three hundred forty-three New York firefighters died that dreadful day in 2001. “We will plan to honor those who died and thank all fire fighters and first responders who serve every day in our own communities,” said Ferschweiler. Portland Firefighters Association along with Portland Fire & Rescue supports efforts to build to the David Campbell Memorial. The new memorial is named after Fire Chief David Campbell. Chief Campbell lost his life in the Standard Oil Building fire on June 26, 1911 while ensuring his firefighters were safe. Campbell was such an iconic figure his funeral procession was witnessed by over 150,000 citizens. To date, thirty-six Portland firefighters have died in the line of duty. Thirty-seven more have died of service-connected diseases, like the cancers that firefighters develop at a greatly elevated rate. The David Campbell Memorial will be built on the Eastbank Esplanade, adjacent to Fire Station 21 and the Hawthorne Bridge. The new memorial will honor fallen Portland firefighters. Past and present Portland firefighters have donated over $100,000 and the foundation is now seeking public support to move forward with construction.
For more information on THE DAVID CAMPBELL MEMORIAL ASSOCIATION and images of the new site, please go to: http://davidcampbellmemorial.org