Americans have traditionally prided themselves as civilian soldiers, preferring to live in peace, but ready to defend our beliefs when challenged by an enemy. No event in our recent history demonstrated this more than the events of Sept. 11, 2001 and in the days that followed.
The images of jetliners purposely crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in Shanksville, PA, will be forever seared into our national consciousness. Even today, replays of those images wrench us back to the nation-wide anguish and anger we felt that day.
Our collective emotions transcended race, gender, religion, politics, culture heritage and national origins. With one voice, we came together as Americans and steeled ourselves for the call to duty that we knew would inevitably come.
This Thursday marks the seventh anniversary since that terrible day, and although our nation is divided on the courses we have pursued in the Iraq War, we will again come together to remember and honor those who paid the ultimate price for their faith and belief in a free society. The victims, whether innocent civilians lost in the WTC collisions, citizen warriors aboard Flight 93, or the service personnel who perished at the Pentagon or during the rescue attempts in NYC, all deserve tribute for the sacrifices they made that day.
In recognition of 9/11, Saddleback College will host a ceremony honoring the victims of 9/11 and the first responders at a Commemoration Ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 11, from 10 to 10:30 a.m. outside of the Health Sciences building on upper campus.
Chief Harry Parmer, Director of the Saddleback College Department of Public Safety, will officiate at the event. Speakers will include students in Saddleback’s paramedic program and student veterans, who will offer words of the contributions of the first responders who risked their lives to help others on Sept. 11, 2001.