‘Day of Remembrance’ to mark 9/11 tragedy
Friday marks the eighth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, and some locals are honoring the fallen by hosting a special “Day of Remembrance” event at Cape Harbour.
Entering its second year, the ceremony will pay tribute to the New York police and fire departments, the New York Port Authority, private EMTs and paramedics, military personnel and civilians who perished in the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
As one of the co-organizers, retired American Airlines flight attendant Sharee McClellan Thieleman said this year’s ceremony was expanded to include all of the first responders who died on that day.
Last year’s inaugural event focused on NYPD, FDNY and the crew members of the commercial airplanes used in the attacks.
“It’ll be a little different this year, we wanted to make sure everyone was included,” she said. “It’ll be the same format, but this year it’s a memorial for all the victims and heroes.”
Presenters include Cape Coral Police Chief Rob Petrovich, Fire Chief Bill Van Helden, Thieleman, City Manager Terry Stewart, who will also sing the national anthem, and the Cape Coral Police Color Guard.
Last year’s event was emotional.
Retired fire and police officers and officials joined active members of both organizations on the patio at Rumrunners, all sharing their individual stories, thoughts and feelings about that day.
The ceremony concluded with a symbolic gesture as participants placed flowers into the waterway behind Rumrunners, each flower representing the name of a crew member who died on one of the fateful flights.
Thieleman said the emotion still runs high, especially for those who were there eight years ago.
“There are so many police and firefighters from New York who can’t talk about it,” she said. “I’ve asked before if anyone would like to speak, and they still can’t … it’s still very hard and very emotional.”
A Day of Remembrance takes place at 8:30 a.m. at Rumrunners. The event is free and open to the public.
For more information, contact Thieleman at 822-8035.