In Shanksville, Pa., people from across the nation joined together on Sun., Sept. 11 to remember the heroes of Flight 93, who overtook the plane to prevent further tragedies.
Although family members of Flight 93 joined together to mourn, the memorial site also welcomed the general public, several dignitaries, including President Barack Obama, and numerous members of the armed forces.
Sergeant First Class Scott Ferris walked the field 10 years ago looking for remains from the crash. “Every time you come out here, you get an eerie feeling,” Ferris said.
SFC Ferris, who paused to salute in the direction of a trumpet performing “Taps,” fears that future generations will forget. “It seems like kids don’t care,” he said. Like Pearl Harbor and Vietnam, Sept. 11 (9/11) is a part of our history.
Paul Hall, an onlooker, listed 9/11 among the three main events that he will never forget in his life. These included the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Hall, who was in Washington, DC when the terrorist attacks occurred 10 years ago, recalled his experience:
“The world changed that day,” Hall said. “It’ll never go back to the way it was. We had a lot of freedom. After you lose things, you see how you took it for granted.”
According to Hall, even the financial strains affecting today’s economy are linked back to 9/11. “The money we’ve spent since then to try to guard and help people is tremendous. I think it will continue for a while,” he said.
Sergeant Dustin Davis was a junior in high school at football practice when the terrorist attacks occurred. “It did for us what it did for a lot of Americans – motivated us to take a stand,” he said.
Davis, who attended the memorial as an assignment, acknowledged the obvious void that 9/11 created. For Davis, 9/11 “put the initial spark” in his mind to join the United States Marine Corp.
John and June Brough traveled from Ohio to be a part of the memorial service. Brough, who lost his ex-wife in the crash, did not learn of her passing for two days.
“These people on Flight 93, they were above the ordinary,” said John Brough. “They took action when nobody else would. They’re true American heroes.”
“I want [future generations] to remember to not be afraid to stand up for [themselves] like these 40 did,” said Brough’s current wife, June.
John Victor Lloyd, a fire marshal in the Philadelphia area, remembered 9/11 and the way it brought the nation together. “Today makes me feel good,” he said.
According to Lloyd, 9/11 woke up a sleeping giant in the same way World War II motivated the country. “The country woke up, and it’s on the right track,” he said.