The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

September 11, 2013

Groups plan Patriot Day observances in Athens

By Karen Middleton

— The Athens State University Student Government Association will host a 9/11 remembrance today at 9 a.m. The gathering will assemble at the Alumni Flagpole in front of Brown Hall near the intersection of Pryor and Elkton streets.

Assistant Professor of Religion Robby White will speak. The event is free to the public.

In another observance, Living Water Works Ministries and members of the Athens-Limestone Ministerial Alliance will hold a Patriot Day event from noon to 1 p.m. today on the east side of the Athens Square at the flag pole.

Those wanting more information about that event are requested to call John Axford at 256-431-4111.

Sept. 11, 2001, is this generation’s Pearl Harbor. Just as those who were alive when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941, people today will always remember where they were and what they were doing when first hearing news about the first hijacked plane hitting the World Trade Center. It is our “day that will live in infamy.”

While Sept. 11 is not a federal holiday, many will pause to remember nearly 3,000 innocent people who lost their lives that fateful day when terrorists hijacked four airliners.

Two of those hijacked planes hit the two towers of the World Trade Center, one hit the Pentagon and another went down in a Shanksville, Pa., field when passengers tried to take back control of the airliner before it could be flown into a structure. Many say that plane was destined for the White House.

When Patriot Day was proclaimed it was the direction of the president, that the American flag should be displayed on the homes of Americans, the White House and all United States government buildings around the globe. The flag should be flown at half-staff as a mark of respect to those who died on Sept. 11, 2001.

Many people observe a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time. This marks the time that the first plane flew into the World Trade Center.

While Patriot Day is the official observance of the events of 9/11, Americans and people around the world have continued to feel the effects every day of the last 12 years. Thousands of citizens have lost loved ones in the Global War on Terrorism and travelers are reminded every time they fly with the increased security measures.