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Wed September 11, 2013
Winston-Salem Honors Victims & Survivors of the 9/11 Attacks
The worst terrorist attack on American soil is being remembered in assorted ways by North Carolina's military and civilians Wednesday. Flags are draped from fire trucks and are hanging from porches across the Piedmont Triad. Several commemoration ceremonies are also taking place in the region.
In Winston-Salem, community members gathered at Corpening Plaza Wednesday morning to mark the 12 year anniversary of the attacks.
The 9/11 commemoration began with a presentation of colors by the Winston-Salem Fire Department Honor Guards.
Hubert Pegram, 78, from Winston-Salem attended the ceremony. His eyes welled with tears at times during the program.
“It brings back memories that the United States is still vulnerable and the way it is going now it is going to be more vulnerable,” says Pegram.
Students and staff from Berean Baptist Christian School also attended the commemoration. Eighth grader Cassie Smith was only one year old when the attacks happened, but she says she is learning a lot about this important part of U.S. history.
“Our theme for our school is training patriots, so I feel like I’m a patriot inside and even though I’m not out there doing everything with the policeman and firefighters, I’m still trying to do my part in this land and in this country,” says Smith.
During the ceremony in Winston-Salem, the victims of the 9/11 attacks were also remembered with a moment of silence and the ringing of the firehouse bell.
Guest speakers included mayor Allen Joines, Winston-Salem police chief Barry Rountree, Forsyth County Sheriff Bill Schatzman, and Forsyth County EMS Director Dan Ozimek.
Rountree says on 9/11, he was in a training session with other law enforcement officers at North Carolina State University. He says he will never forget the emotions he felt that day, and community support is important to first responders like him.
“Community support means a lot to me. We do it every day. It is not to the magnitude as it was in New York, but our officers, firefighters and emergency responders put their lives on the line every day to protect the freedom of others,” says Rountree.
The 9/11 terror attacks took nearly 3,000 lives when hijacked planes crashed into New York's Twin Towers, the Pentagon and a rural field in Pennsylvania.