Patriot Day on September 11th honors the memory of the nearly 3,000 innocent victims who died in the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Each year Americans dedicate this day to remembering those who died and to the first responders who risked their own lives to save others.
For many, September 11, 2001, began like any other weekday. We made our way to work. Children attended school. We shopped, had coffee, waited in line at a drive-thru. Those of us who weren’t in New York City heard the first reports on the radio or television. A friend or neighbor alerted us to a plane flying into one of the Twin Towers. We felt disbelief. An accident, perhaps, a miscalculation. Then, a second plane flew into the second tower. Our disbelief turned into uncertainty and concern.
I can clearly remember everything from that morning. As most of us know some memories are more clear than others, this is often because events like 9 – 11, Kennedy Assassination, Princess Diana’s death, are tied to strong emotions.
I can remember hearing about the first plane on the radio alarm. I stumbled into the livingroom telling my fiance to turn on the news. We watched in stunned disbelief as the second and third planes crashed. With everything in disarray we still had to go into work at the mall even if it was very short lived.
Upon returning home we were glued to the news as events continued to unfold. In our lifetimes there had not been an attack of this magnitude on American soil. I cannot say how many emotions we went through that day. Ours could never compare to the families and first responders directly involved.
As we step into yet another remembrance of this tragedy, I reflect on missing September 12th. On September 12, this country was unified like I have not seen in years. Especially in light of today’s climate in our country. The senseless bickering, blaming and destruction, are what did not exist on September 12. We were proud to be Americans. While our country is not perfect, we do not live with those events as a daily occurrence.
Those on the ground faced terror and obstacles they had never known. As a set of coordinated suicide attacks organized by the militant group Al Qaeda targeted the World Trade Center, the rest of the nation witnessed the unbelievable. And then a third plane crashed into The Pentagon. And yet another crashed into a field in Shanksville, PA.
As the recent turmoil in regard to Afghanistan persists, I sincerely hope we remember this tragedy was the catalyst that got us there.
Every year since that fateful day, the United States comes together to remember the fallen. We remember the first responders and those who made difficult decisions. Since that day, memorials have risen from the ashes.
HOW TO OBSERVE #PatriotDay #NeverForget
- Attend Patriot Day ceremonies.
- Observe moments of silence:
- 8:46 AM EDT – American Airlines Flight #11 collides into the World Trade Center
- 9:03 AM EDT – United Airlines Flight #175 collides into the World Trade Center South Tower
- 9:37 AM EDT – American Airlines Flight #77 crashes into the Pentagon
- 9:59 AM EDT – World Trade Center South Tower Collapses
- 10:03 AM EDT – United Airlines Flight #93 crashes in Shanksville, PA
- 10:28 AM EDT – World Trade Center North Tower Collapses
- Volunteer – While remembering the day, help an organization with meaning to you. Improve the lives of others and the world around you. Spread kindness. Offer them hope. Share your skills with those who need them most.
- Remember – Remember those killed in the attacks. Remember to stand united as a Nation. Join others in prayer vigils or memorial events.
Use #PatriotDay or #NeverForget to post on social media and show your support.
PATRIOT DAY HISTORY
- September 13, 2001 – In the immediate aftermath of the terrorist attacks, President George W. Bush proclaimed Friday, September 14, 2001, as a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for the Victims of the Terrorist Attacks on September 11, 2001.
- August 31, 2002 – President George W. Bush proclaimed Friday, September 6, through Sunday, September 8, 2002, as National Days of Prayer and Remembrance.
- September 4, 2002 – President Bush proclaimed September 11, 2002, as the first Patriot Day.
- September 9, 2016 – President Barack Obama proclaimed September 11th as Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance,
One day I hope we will return to the ideals of September 12th. I come from a community who bands together to help each other in the wake of things like hurricanes. Soon I hope that spirit prevails to all situations.
This year while we morn the loss of September 11th, I implore those both in government and citizens to strive once again to return to a September 12th. For the good of our children, our nation and humanity.
The road there starts with each of us. We have to decide to strive for it. If not for the future of our country for our children and grandchildren. We must teach both our children and grandchildren what this future should be.
In 2017 and 2018, President Donald Trump declared September 8–10 as National Days of Prayer and Remembrance and proclaimed September 11 as Patriot Day. “During the National Days of Prayer and Remembrance, we pause to honor the memory of the nearly 3,000 innocent people who were murdered by radical Islamist terrorists in the brutal attacks of September 11, 2001. We come together to pray for those whose lives were forever changed by the loss of a loved one. We strengthen our resolve to stand together as one Nation.”