As the mission of the American Legion family — “for God and country” — dictates, we, the members of American Legion Post 17, wish to offer our prayers, thanks and memories of 9/11 to all in our Lewes community.
Many of us are now Delawareans but, 20 years ago, we were in New York City, near a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, or in Washington, D.C., near the Pentagon, when our TV screens started showing pictures that did not seem real. Our cellphones rang and then suddenly stopped. Confusing messages and images were confronting all of us.
First responders, many we called friends, were called to action at all three sites, working side by side as comrades were lost in the attacks.
The minutes turned to hours, then days, as we tried to figure out how to help all those who were so affected. Firemen, police and paramedics responded without hesitation, and along with uniformed military, National Guard and Reserve units, became our newest heroes as America reeled from this act of terrorism. The service of those days has now resulted in the illnesses, deaths and health issues — known and unknown — borne by these heroes.
So today, we say thank you to all who stepped up to those tasks and to the dear ones who gave all that day. Their loved ones mourn — not only on 9/11 but each day these past 20 years — for all that was lost and all that will be forever missed. The haunted memories and grief are sharpened each anniversary and remind us that we should not forget the unselfish service and profound sacrifices made that day.
On this 20th anniversary of 9/11, we will pause as we always do and ask that our community do the same. On the morning of 9/11 at 8:46 a.m., look skyward and, with hand over heart, say to all the first responders, all who were lost and all those who mourn: Thank you. We will never forget!
American Legion Post 17