Fort Wainwright holds ceremony remembering 9/11

Published: Sep. 12, 2023 at 9:40 AM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Fort Wainwright hosted service members, civilians and local officials on Monday, September 11 for a ceremony in honor of the 22nd anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

“Today we pause to reflect and remember together,” said Col. Jason A Cole, USAF Alaska Garrison Commander.

Among the thousands that died on September 11, 2001, 343 firefighters and 71 law enforcement officers lost their lives.

This sacrifice and the long rescue effort that took place at Ground Zero, in the days and weeks after, were recognized at the event. “On that day, we witnessed countless acts of heroism and selflessness, from first responders to ordinary citizens who stepped up to help,” recalled Cole.

Dozens of community members attended to pay their respects. Cole asked those present to “carry the torch of freedom, justice and compassion forward, ensuring that the legacy of 9/11 is not just one of tragedy but also one of resilience and the enduring spirit of America.”

A moment of silence was taken, as a bell tolled in recognition of the events more than two decades past.

An American flag was lowered to half staff.

Even 22 years later, many can still remember clearly where they were on that day. “It was a day that shook our nation to its core,” said Cole.

A nearby display carried items from the event, from a shard of debris to a shirt from the New York City Fire Department.

After an Honor Guard Salute, the assembled crowd joined in a rendition of God Bless America. Speaking to the crowd, Cole said, “Let us remember that our diversity is our strength and that we are all united by a common purpose regardless of our backgrounds.”