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Origins of Patriots Day

Sep 14, 2023 11:53AM ● By Verlene Johnson

Morgan Fire Station, Sept. 11. Courtesy photo

Sept. 11, 2001, started as a typical day for most Americans with some traveling to and from their destinations, others getting their children off to school and heading to work. Many didn’t know it would be a day that would change America, yet unite the U.S. in a way it hadn’t been united in years.              

Since then, Sept. 11 has been known as a day of remembrance, a day of prayer, a day of mourning, and more recently a day of service, as a way to honor those who perished as a result of the terrorist attacks that were carried out by Al-Qaeda on Sept. 11, 2001. This includes those killed at the World Trade Center Towers, the Pentagon, and those on Flight 93 that went down in a Pennsylvania field. A total of 2,996 perished, including 344 firefighters, 71 law enforcement officers, and 59 military personnel. Two thousand six hundred and five were U.S. citizens and 372 non-U.S. citizens. Had the attacks happened later in the day, it is estimated that 50,000 workers along with 200,000 visitors could have been in the 10 million square feet space resulting in thousands of more lives lost.

In the aftermath of the attacks, President George W. Bush declared that Sept. 14, 2001, would be a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance for the Victims of the terrorist attacks three days earlier. A bill to make Sept. 11 a National Day of Mourning was introduced on Oct. 25, 2001, by New York senator Vitto Fossella along with 22 co-sponsors. On Dec. 18, 2001, in a joint resolution of the U.S. Congress, Sept. 11 was designated as Patriot Day.

While Patriots Day is not a federal holiday, it is recognized as a day to honor those who were lost on Sept. 11, 2001. Each year the president of the United States is to issue a proclamation requesting that all U.S. flags be flown at half-staff. Americans are asked to honor those who perished in the attacks with a moment of silence beginning at 8:46 a.m. EST-the time that the first airplane struck the north tower of World Trade Center- which is 6:46 a.m. in Morgan.

While this particular holiday does not call for celebrations of parades, family barbecues, or fireworks, it is appropriate to gather at 9/11 memorial sites for a moment of silence and reading of the names of those who died that fateful day. Many like to wear patriotic attire, such as flags on their shirts or simply wearing red, white, and blue.

This year in Morgan, Saturday, Sept.9 a community Day of Service will take place. Over the past couple of months, congregations from the three Morgan Stakes from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have been gathering items to donate to Turkey, Syria, and Ukraine. In addition, flags will be placed around the community by the Morgan High Spirit Squad along with some residences placing their own flags on their property. λ

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