“Patriot Day”

Published 9:18 am Monday, September 11, 2017

Sixteen years ago at 8:45 A.M., the first plane crashed into one of the

World Trade Center Towers. 

At 9:03 A.M., the second plane crashed into the other tower.

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At 9:43 A.M., an aircraft crashed into the Pentagon.

At 10:05 A.M., the South Tower collapsed. 

At 10:10 A.M., a plane crashed in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

At 10:28 A.M., the North Tower collapsed.

The events that occurred in 2001 on September 11th shocked and staggered

our Nation, but only for a moment.  An enemy unfamiliar with the strength

and resilience of the American people mistakenly thought they could

frighten and cripple us as a Nation.

Their assumptions and misunderstandings of who we are and what we stand

for, immediately became apparent to them and to the rest of the world.

Out of the chaos of that day, came order and a clear sense of what we needed

to do.  Out of the confusion of that day came a new solidarity:  a strength of

purpose and a clear and united resolve – not in the name of vengeance alone,

but more importantly, in the name of justice.  We looked closer at ourselves

on September 11, and in the days that followed.

The smoke and dust of the ruined Twin Towers, failed to cast a shadow over

the extreme acts of courage and valor displayed by hundreds of police,

firefighters, emergency medical personnel and others during the frightful

morning of September 11.  We now understand that heroes surround us on a

daily basis.  Everyday heroes, ordinary men and women made extraordinary

by their professionalism and their willingness to serve and protect … and

who go beyond the boundaries of duty.

When American Airlines Flight #77 tore through the walls of the Pentagon,

it was selfless government and civilian workers who put their lives at risk to

save fellow employees and comrades.

And passengers aboard United Flight #93 showed valor beyond words when,

after realizing terrorists had taken control of their aircraft and were targeting

the Nation’s Capital with cruel intent, took action that perhaps saved

thousands of lives … at cost of their own. 

The truth of that day reaffirmed what we already knew; that evil will always

be countered by good.  That violence is not strength and compassion is not

the enemy.

Through all of this, what has become evident is the rekindling of the

American spirit and new awareness and deeper appreciation of what our

Nation stands for. 

As we reflect on those whose lives were cut short as a result of the attack on

America, we can take solace in knowing that their memory has served to

inspire a greater enthusiasm for service.  The best way for us to honor their

memory is to recommit ourselves to our Families, our communities and to

our Country.  We can do this through our local community service projects.

The Polk County Memorial VFW Auxiliary Post #9116 do honor all

our Polk Emergency Personnel during September. 

President George W. Bush designated September 11 as “Patriot Day.”  As

we take a moment for silence in memory of those whose lives we lost, let us

each be determined to do more in their name to make the United States an

even greater Nation than ever!  Remember we have boys and girls, men and

women giving their lives overseas as we speak.  We have not forgotten 9-11-


God Bless America and Our Troops.

We hope everyone takes a moment of silence in memory of this terrible day

in our history.  Do not forget to thank a fireman, EMS person, police officer

or rescue squad for what they do for us.

Joyce B. Preston, President, Past NC Department, Polk County Memorial V.F.W. Auxiliary #9116