America’s schoolchildren weren’t alive for the horrors of Sept. 11, 2001, now dubbed Patriot Day by many.
The First State will honor the nearly 3,000 people killed and the thousands of first responders who risked their lives to protect civilians that in a variety of programs.
“It’s important because there’s a whole generation that did not experience what many of us did: the assault to our safety and to our nation.” said state Rep. Ruth Briggs King, R-Georgetown.
“Helping educate the youth about what happened and honoring those who rushed in to save people shows respect, and it’s important that children know the impact that left on America.”
Many first responders are battling cancer from the debris and toxins released, and families who lost a loved one often struggle with chronic mental health illnesses, she said.
The services and commemorations also raise awareness “we’re not living in some safe bubble, and anything at any given time can happen,” she said. “This was really an attack on many people, many races, and it didn’t matter what your background was.”
Paula Martinson, recreation supervisor at the Newark Parks & Recreation Department, said that although it has been 21 years since 9/11, the state needs to ensure they’re honoring all those who were involved so the significance of that day is not forgotten.
Her department is hosting two events, including a Patriot Day Ceremony on Friday, Sept. 9, and a National Day of Service on Saturday, Sept. 10.
Here are seven ways to honor those who served and the victims that died on 9/11:
City of Newark’s Patriot Day & Day of Service
Newark’s Parks & Recreation Department has organized events for Friday and Saturday.
On Friday, Sept. 9, it will join the University of Delaware to host a Patriot Day Ceremony at 9 a.m. at Olan Thomas Park located at 89 Paper Mill Road.
The park has a dedicated plaque in memory of 9/11 as well as three trees that were planted to honor those who died.
Newark city officials will speak at the conclusion of the national anthem and a flag-folding ceremony.
On Saturday, Sept. 10, the department is holding a day of service at Olan Thomas Park from 9 a.m. to noon.
The day is for volunteers to help clean the park and assist in park projects.
To register call (302) 366-7000 or email [email protected].
Appoquinimink’s Patriot’s Day Observance
At 9 a.m. on Friday, Sept. 9, Appo School District will host an audience of 250-300 people at their ceremony on the front lawn of Middletown High School.
The Appo community will be joined by active and retired military, first responders, a slew of guest speakers including State Sen. Stephanie Hansen and State Rep. Kevin Hensley, who were primary sponsors of the 9/11 Remembrance Flag Act.
The act, encourages all government buildings and facilities to display the 9/11 Remembrance Flag on Sept. 11 of each year.
The remembrance flag is permitted to be flown beneath, and not in place of, the American Flag.
It’s filled with symbolism to honor those who served and lost their lives.
- A field of blue represents all Americans united together for freedom
- Two broad red stripes symbolize the Twin Towers and bloodshed of the people who died that day
- Three white stripes in memory of the rescue workers, firefighters, police officers, Port Authority employees and others who worked to protect civilians
- Two smaller red stripes at the top and bottom of the flag to honor the crew and passengers who lost their lives aboard the American Airlines Flight 77 and United Airlines Flight 93. These planes were hijacked and then crashed into the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pa.
- Five white bars, representing the Pentagon and the organized protection of freedom, surround a large white star symbolizing all who lived and died for freedom.
The Appo ceremony will also include a flag ceremony, and Taps.
Dover Speedway Blood Drive
On Monday, Sept. 12, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Dover Motor Speedway will host its 17th annual blood drive.
The drive will take place in the Diamond Rooms on the fourth floor of Bally’s Dover Casino Resort.
Donors should park in the hotel and casino lots and should use the signage in the hotel entranceway to go to the atrium. They should take an elevator to the fourth floor, where the Diamond Rooms are to the left.
Milton 9/11 Memorial Tribute
The City of Milton will host a ceremony at 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 11, at Milton Memorial Park.
The Milton fire and police departments and the Milton Veterans of Foreign Wars will be present with guest speakers.
Attendees are asked to meet at the flag poles.
Dover Air Force Base 9/11 Memorial Ceremony
The Dover Air Force Base is hosting a commemorative event at 10 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 11, at the AMC Museum in Dover.
Police Chief Dennis L. Rubin will be speaking.
Last year, the event was invitation only, but this year is open to the public and the base’s Facebook page encourages community members to join in the service.
American Legion Post 28 Memorial Ceremony
Millsboro’s American Legion Post 28 is hosting a get-together at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 11 at their pavilion on Legion Road.
There will be a candle-lighting ceremony and a musical performance from Judy Sings the Blues.
Citizens’ Hose Co. 9/11 Service
Smyrna’s Citizens’ Hose Co. is hosting a memorial service at 7 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 11 at the firehouse on West Commerce Street.
This year’s guest speaker is Robert Verhelst, who served on a search and recovery team after the 9/11 attacks.
If your organization has a ceremony and would like it to be added to this list, contact Jarek Rutz at (215) 450-9982 or [email protected]
Raised in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, Jarek earned a B.A. in journalism and a B.A. in political science from Temple University in 2021. After running CNN’s Michael Smerconish’s YouTube channel, Jarek became a reporter for the Bucks County Herald before joining Delaware LIVE News.
Jarek can be reached by email at [email protected] or by phone at (215) 450-9982. Follow him on Twitter @jarekrutz
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