Do you remember what you were doing the morning of Sept. 11, 2001? I was busy that morning getting the Montezuma Republican ready for printing.
On the front page of that week’s issue was a photo I took at the former Sutfin Furniture on Main Street in Montezuma. The photo was of a sign in the window that stated it was the store’s final day. It was kind of chilling to think for many, it was the final day.
For some reason, I was thinking we had a television at the Republican office. I don’t remember. Anyway, all of us at the office listened and watched as the events of the day unfolded. A planned attack on American soil.
It’s been 20-years since that day, I day that I will never forgot. I hope none of us forget!
I arose early Saturday morning, Sept. 11, 2021, and headed up to Montezuma to cover the 4.12 mile Honor Walk hosted by the Montezuma Fire & Rescue Department.
Following a prayer and moment of reflection, fire department volunteers and walkers from Montezuma and elsewhere took to the streets at 7:30 a.m. in honor of the 412 emergency responders who lost their lives on that day. The walk was led by volunteer firemen dressed in their turnout gear, carrying an American and other flags.
The walk ended at the Freedom Rock on the southeast side of the Poweshiek County Courthouse where a moment of reflection and prayer was led by the Montezuma American Legion & Auxiliary. The event included the Pledge of Allegiance, a prayer and the singing of “God Bless America.”
During my career, I’ve coved lot of community and school events, parades and other gatherings. I’ve written hundreds of news and features stories and taken more photos than books in the Library of Congress, or it seems so. These memorial events, no matter the cause, are always touching and memorable. I’m thankful to God that He has put me in the position to be on the frontlines of journalism to share these events with others. Thank you for your support.
Following are the events of the 9-11-2001
• 8:46 a.m. – American Airlines Flight 11 was flown into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, killing 92 passengers and crew members onboard.
• 9:03 a.m. – United Airlines Flight 175 was flown into the South Tour of the World Trade Center, killing all 56 passengers and nine crew members onboard.
• 9:37 a.m. – American Airlines Flight 77 was hijacked over Ohio and it crashed into the west side of the Pentagon. The crash killed all 64 crew and passengers onboard the plane and 125 in the Pentagon.
• 10:03 a.m. – United Airlines Flight 93 crashed in a field near Shanksville, Penn., killing all 44 passengers and crew onboard. The bravery of the passengers who attempted to regain control of the aircraft from the four hijackers ultimately diverted the flight from its intended target of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., to the crash site in Pennsylvania.
The attacks on 9-11 resulted in 2,977 fatalities, including 412 emergency responders…23 FDNY, 37 police officers of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey police departments, 23 NYPD, eight EMT’s and paramedics and one patrolman from the New York Fire Patrol.
In wrapping this up, I wish to encourage you to get involved, give to others and be a difference maker right where you are. Change doesn’t start with the nuts in Washington, D.C., it’s starts in our communities, our neighborhoods, our jobs and in our homes. Take time out of your busy life this week and be a difference maker in the life of someone else.
My momma taught me that it is always better to do unto others as you would want them to do unto you. It’s a truth that has made me the person I am.
Don’t quit giving and don’t give up. Stand up and be proud – this is America, home of the free and home of the brave.
Have a great week and always remember that “Good Things are Happening,” every day and always.