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September 15, 2011

Community Remembers September 11th, a Decade Later

Flags were at half-staff on Sunday to honor those who died in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The fire department remembered the nearly 300 firemen that lost their lives in the collapse of the World Trade Center.

The United States and Missouri flags at all government buildings statewide were flown at half-staff on Sunday to honor those who died in the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

"In every part of Missouri on Sunday, people will stop and remember where they were ten years ago," stated Governor Jay Nixon. "It will be a time to honor those whose lives were lost on that world-changing day, as well as a time to renew our resolve to safeguard our liberty and the many freedoms we enjoy as Americans.

In Memphis, flags were lowered and moments of silence were observed at Sunday morning church services to recognize the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks. Members of the Scotland County Fire Department gathered at the station for breakfast and marked the start of that tragic day's events by sounding the sirens at 7:46 a.m., the time the first plane struck the World Trade Center in New York City, starting that day's terrorist attacks in motion.

Ten years ago, despite being thousands of miles from the attack on America, county residents showed their support for the victims of the 9/11 attacks with a number of fundraisers.

The SCR-I football team took the field Friday night under the Stars and Stripes as a reminder of the 9/11 memorial weekend.

Students at the SCR-I high school and elementary school raised a combined $1,100 for the Red Cross relief efforts. A soup supper fundraiser, hosted by the fire department, raised more than $6,600 for the families of New York city firemen that lost their lives responding to the Trade Center attacks.

"I remember getting ready to do KMEM's Coffee Break show at the time from the big bay window at Java Jitters in Memphis, and hearing the ABC news anchor's emotion at what had transpired in New York as the events were unfolding," said radio announcer Rick Fischer. " I remember thinking, 'Jeez, this guy is being kind of dramatic, almost like the crash of the Hindenberg blimp.' I also remember the following day, when, representing KMEM, I stood with Dan Day from KRXL out at Gan-N-More, and together, we collected around three thousand dollars people contributed to the American Red Cross. Our community really stepped up, and I was very proud."

Amy (Morgan) Oshner recalled that day in 2001, when she was in Ms. White's English class.

"Mr. Colvin came in and said what had happened," she said. "We thought he was just making it up until we turned on the television and watched the news for the rest of the hour and into the next class. I think most of us were in shock and disbelief that this could or would happen. It still feels like it was yesterday. I can't believe it has been 10 years."

The graphic nature of the coverage put teachers in a difficult position, with the need to know what was going on but the responsibility to protect the students from seeing too much.

"I was at work at Kirksville Middle School," said Laurie Ward. "I can remember teachers turning on the TV's to watch the 'current event' and then staff quickly realizing how tragic and graphic the coverage was becoming. One of our teacher's daughters was in New York and of course she was frantic. We ended up having all the teachers turn off the TV's and attempt to have classes as normal. I just happened to be doing a lesson on citizenship around that time, and tried to get middle school kids to realize what they could do, even at their age, to show support."

Nikki (Myers) Kreite was a college student at the University of Missouri.

"I was sitting in my non-destructive analysis class when I heard the news," she recalled. "As soon as class let out, I rushed back to my apartment and got my small TV and took it to the mechanical engineering student lounge where several of us were glued to the TV the rest of the day. I will never forget that day. Looking back it was kind of ironic... on that day we were in a class that taught methods of analyzing the structure of buildings amongst other things."

U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, released the following statement on the tenth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks:

"It's a testament to the resiliency of the American people that ten years after the unprovoked attacks orchestrated by Osama bin Laden, he has been brought to justice-and we are rebuilding out of the ashes. Though we know that the wounds from that terrible day will never fully heal, America is stronger today than it was a decade ago, in large part thanks to the sacrifice and service of our courageous troops, their families, as well as the intelligence community. I join all Americans today in praying for, and giving thanks to our troops, police, firefighters, first responders, and those working behind the scenes who keep our communities safe. September 11th was a defining moment of tragedy in our nation's history. It was also a moment that united all Americans in common grief, and common purpose. As we remember the family and friends we lost that day, as well as all the thousands of men and women lost fighting to secure our freedom in the ten years since, it's my hope that we can regain that sense of common purpose. Because only together can we confront the challenges that face our nation today and secure America's future for the generations who'll follow us."

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Memphis Democrat
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Memphis MO 63555
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