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Crestview to observe 9/11 with Patriot Day remembrance ceremony

Brian Hughes | Special to the News Bulletin

CRESTVIEW — Moments of silence marking each terrorist-hijacked airliner impact time, reading the names of those who lost their lives during the attacks, and solemn reflection will highlight a Sept. 11, 2001, remembrance ceremony on Patriot Day in Crestview.

More:ARCHIVE PHOTOS: Sept. 11 in Northwest Florida

The county seat will observe the attacks’ 19th anniversary starting 8:46 a.m. Sept. 11 at the Okaloosa County Veterans Memorial, located at the corner of Main Street and Courthouse Terrace in Crestview. 

Aerial view of the Pentagon Building located in Washington, District of Columbia (DC), showing emergency crews responding to the destruction caused when a high-jacked commercial jetliner crashed into the southwest corner of the building, during the 9/11 terrorists attacks.

That is when American Airlines flight 11, a Boeing 767, crashed into No. 1 World Trade Center, the North Tower.

“This will be a ceremony to remember the events of Sept. 11 and to honor the lives that were lost during and in response to the attacks, and those lives that have been changed forever,” said Mayor JB Whitten, asking that attendees arrive by 8:30 a.m. to assure a seat.

The ceremony will include moments of silence at the time of each subsequent attack, including 9:03 a.m., when United Airlines flight 175 crashed into No. 2 World Trade Center, the South Tower; 9:37 a.m., the time that American Airlines flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon; and 10:03 a.m., when United Airlines flight 93 crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania after passengers thwarted its hijackers’ plan to crash into the U.S. Capitol.

A (Sept. 17, 2001) aerial view shows only a small portion of the crime scene where the World Trade Center collapsed following the Sept. 11 terrorist attack. Surrounding buildings were heavily damaged by the debris and massive force of the falling twin towers.

The ceremony will also pause at 9:59 a.m., the time at which the WTC South Tower collapsed, and 10:28 a.m., marking the time of the WTC North Tower’s collapse. (No. 7 World Trade Center collapsed at 4:21 Central Time due to extensive structural damage caused by fires started from flaming debris thrown by the North Tower’s collapse.)

The Crestview Fire and Police Departments’ Honor Guard will participate in the ceremony, which is open to the public.

A New York City fire fighter looks up (on Sept. 13, 2001) at what remains of the World Trade Center after its collapse during the Sept. 11 terrorist attack.

“I encourage all of our citizens to attend this moving ceremony,” Whitten said. “This will be an excellent educational opportunity for many of our younger citizens who do not remember when the World Trade Center towers stood over Manhattan.”

SEPT. 11 MEMORIAL CEREMONY

WHAT: Public ceremony honoring lives lost in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

WHEN: Be seated by 8:30 for the 8:46-10:30 a.m. Friday, Sept. 11 ceremony

WHERE: Okaloosa County Veterans Memorial, Main Street at Courthouse Terrace

NOTES: Social distancing will be practiced during this moving ceremony. Seating is limited.

Brian Hughes is the City of Crestview Public Information Officer.