On Monday evening the Town of Lloyd remembered the tragic events that took place on September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center in New York City, at the Pentagon in Virginia and at Shanskville, Pennsylvania.
In a somber ceremony in front of the Highland Fire Station and the Lloyd Police Department, all took time out of their day to honor those who were lost on that September morning 22 years ago.
Firefighter Fred DeMaio opened with an Invocation; in part,
“Heavenly Father, empower us to combat hatred with love, remembering how you told us to love our neighbor as ourselves. Father, watch over us tonight and fill us with your peace and grant comfort to the surviving families who are reminded every 911 of what happened. And finally, thank you, oh Lord, for the opportunity to live in this great country, filled with abundance, opportunity and hope for the future and in your name we pray, Amen.”
A moment of silence followed in memory of all of those who lost their lives in 2001.
The Highland Hose Line Officers led in the Pledge of Allegiance, followed by Alan Spaulding singing the National Anthem.
Lloyd Supervisor Dave Plavchak said he was not at the World Trade Center, nor in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, nor on an aircraft or at the Pentagon.
“Although I was not physically there I always think about how would I have reacted in that situation. Some of the stories about people helping others and the heroic acts performed by normal citizens and First Responders were astounding,” he said. “I want to take a moment to let you think about how you would react in that situation.”
Plavchak stressed the importance of always remembering the people who were in these places; both First Responders and citizens who helped and comforted others in need; and what arose from the events of that day, keeping in mind, “the almost 3,000 innocent people who were killed by cowardly terrorists.”
Plavchak said he remembers how, “Americans came together to support one another. People helping people they didn’t know and this is what our country was built on, and for a short moment in time we all witnessed it...I ask all of you to think about how we can get back to helping each other, regardless of beliefs and differences.”
Plavchak concluded by urging everyone, “to not forget about the victims of 911, the First Responders, the families left without their loved ones, and I ask you to continue to support our Police Officers and our Firefighters, as I know they will drop everything to help you when a situation arises.”
Police Chief James Janso said although it has been 22 years since 911, “our country is still healing from the horrific events of 2001.” He said, “On 911 2,977 innocent people, including civilians, police, firefighters and EMS personnel, lost their lives in a series of coordinated attacks. It is a day America should never forget. Though is was an unspeakable tragedy, the September 11 attacks allowed so may individuals to display immense strength, bravery and resilience in the face of devastation that day and for weeks and months ahead.”
Fire Chief Peter Miller said it is important to recognize past dates in our history, “remembered and honored as they should be, lest we forget how the American people have arrived at this date in current history.” He said now, 22 years later, we must remember and honor all who died: the loss of those in Pennsylvania, at the Pentagon and at the World Trade Center. He said the bravery of the firefighters and their desire to save as many as they could needs to be seen in our career and elected officials today.
“The care and compassion of firefighters toward their fellow citizens is traditional beyond reproach and goes along with bravery and the willingness of self-sacrifice, if required,” he said. “We need to be able to accommodate our neighbors and ensure they are helped through the difficulties of life and as it is needed.”
Firefighter James Anzalone performed the traditional Ringing of the Bell that signifies the start of a shift for firefighters, a call for help or the passing of one of their members.
A 21-gun salute followed, and the playing of Taps was performed by Joe Avampato and Peter Maroldt. Leo Bozydaj released a number of white doves, symbols of peace, and Jessica Avampato sang ‘God Bless America.’
Fred DeMaio delivered a Benediction to close the ceremony and light refreshments were served in the firehouse by the Ladies Auxiliary.