Alabama looks back on 9/11, remembering losses, including unity

“I want to do something,” Nancy Culpepper said in Alabama on the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks. “I don’t know what to do, but I would like to do something.”

Culpepper spoke of his fear for the nation today at a ceremony in Huntsville in remembrance of America 20 years ago when terrorists flew planes to New York’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in a field in Pennsylvania after citizen heroes stormed the cabin.

“There is a terrible sense of helplessness that we are suffering from right now,” Culpepper said. “It haunts me every night when I sleep. Looks like everything is upside down. I am here to support America as a whole. Our tragedies but also our victories.

Culpepper wasn’t the only one looking back with the feeling that America has gained something from the tragic attack it is losing today.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen the country come together like it did after 9/11,” Mayor Tommy Battle said before the ceremony. “In the wake of a tragedy, something happened that made the nation realize that we need to work together… It’s time to do the same, to bring the country together. “

The Huntsville ceremony outside the No.1 Fire Hall was a solemn remembrance of 9/11 with sirens blaring in unison across the city at 7.46am, the time in Alabama when the first plane struck the World Trade Center. Other towns and cities in Alabama also marked the anniversary with numerous events.

Birmingham, Ala. ‘, Created this “We Remember” logo to mark activities across the city marking the anniversary of September 11,

Immediately afterwards, a colored guard of first responders lowered the station’s flag to their mid-length as civic leaders silently stood in line with citizens on either side of the flag pole.

District Fire Chief Reginald Roberts prayed starting with another reminder that today “we come together as a nation, as a state and as a city to be remembered.”

“We remember the heroes, the ones who rushed to help,” he said. “We remember the first responders, the police, emergency medical personnel, those who were guides for the injured and those who held the helpless in their arms while fighting for life themselves. We remember those who stood up and sacrificed their lives to avoid the loss of others. We remember our armed forces and every volunteer who used their life and energy to preserve life and make it better for others.

Roberts prayed that Americans today would honor the lives sacrificed and all the suffering caused by 9/11. “May we honor them with our eagerness to work for a world in which our lives are not self-centered, but motivated to care and sacrifice for others above our own. “

Cathy Buttner was among those lining up at the flagpole in response to Fire Chief Howard McFarlen’s invitation to the crowd to join in with first responders and city leaders.

Buttner moved to Huntsville from New Jersey since September 11, but grew up “in the shadow of the Twin Towers.” The attack, she said, “rocked me to the core.” She came with her 9/11 remembrance t-shirt to pay tribute to him and urged all Americans to visit the 9/11 museum at the towers site. “There is so much we didn’t know,” Buttner said.

In Birmingham, firefighters received ‘gift bags’ with thanks from local children and more than 60 artists exhibited their work in an art walk marked by American flags and a minute of silence.

The Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service also honored the lives lost on September 11 with a minute of silence in the fire stations as each of the four hijacked planes crashed on the day of the attack.

In Mobile, a special memorial service was held at the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park and an open house at Fire Station 6 (7 Hollywood Blvd. NE) to meet with firefighters and honor fallen heroes by ringing a bell. ceremony.

US Senator Richard Shelby also released a statement regarding the anniversary today, saying he remembers the chaos on Capitol Hill and calling September 11, 2001 “the day that changed the course of history. our nation “. Here is Shelby’s full statement:

“Today marks the 20th anniversary of the attack on our country on September 11, 2001, a day that changed the course of our country’s history. I remember the chaos that ensued that day in our nation’s Capitol and the tragedy that engulfed the entire country as a result of the barbaric acts of terrorists. Thousands of heroes have paid the ultimate price. Their sacrifice is a reminder that our freedoms and freedoms should not be taken for granted. Twenty years later, our nation is stronger and more anchored in American values ​​and principles under attack on that terrible day. May we remember and honor the innocent lives taken, and may September 11 be a testament to the courage and resilience of the American people forever. “

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