Community remembers 9/11

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 11, 2012

By Shavonne Potts
SALISBURY – This year marks the 11th anniversary of the day many Americans’ lives were changed when terrorists attacked New York City and Washington D.C. on Sept. 11, 2001.
Each year around this time, many stop to reflect on where they were that day and what feelings that day still evokes within them.
The Post asked people in the community what 9/11 meant to them and what memories they held of that day. This is what they said:
• Anna Wood
“It was a horrible tragedy where a lot of people were killed and lost. Not only due to the terrorism but due to our aid to come together. It means a lot because it shows how our country will unite and come together and support one another in a time of need in a time of a great devastation.”
• Toni White
“It was terrible. A tragic loss. I felt sorry for everybody that lost their families. It could’ve been one of my family members. It was horrible.”
• Danny Wood
“It was not only being a horrible tragedy. We lost a lot of our own rights here in the country. As soon as Sept. 11 happened, it gave the key for big brother to step in with Homeland Security. To me, Homeland Security is just another, it’s like Nazi-lite. It’s a smaller version of it. Since that point we’ve had rights taken away from us and there’s gonna be more to come.”
• Henry Norden Fairley IV
“It reaffirmed my values as an American citizen that we all have a responsibility to help out when there’s a time of need, and that when things happen we need to defend American values and the Constitution.”
• Henry Norden Fairley III
“9/11 means to me that America got caught sleeping. As George Washington once said, we should always be constantly vigilant. We assumed our place in the world was so secure that nobody could dare attack the United States. Regrettably, those 3,000 lives go unremembered to this day, for they sacrificed what it means to be an American – freedom, self-reliance, and not relying upon others for your own security. I love my country and I just cannot stand to see how people disregard the handwriting on the wall.”
• Cynthia Stanfield
“The biggest thing I remember I was teaching 7th grade. When the report came in on television for students to see it, they were petrified. As a matter of fact, the principal sent out an announcement to cut the television off because middle schoolers were so terrified and they didn’t know what was happening or if it was coming to them. I was trying to calm a lot of kids’ fears at school.”
Stanfield taught 7th grade in Norfolk, VA.
• Salisbury Police Lt. Tom Wilsey
“It is a time in history when our country was very vulnerable. Our nation let it’s guard down and as a result we were attacked by terrorists. Innocent people were killed including members of public service. Since then, the memories remind us of that day so it doesn’t happen again.”
Wilsey said it’s a time to remember those who perished.
“It’s an eye opener for me where we were as a nation back then.”
• Salisbury Police Detective Tyesha Harden
Harden and her family were stationed in Germany since her husband was in the military.
“I saw it on the news. I couldn’t call back to the states for details. The information was slow. It was an awakening. Oftentimes we get complacent. Freedom isn’t free. It made me realize life is so precious. We should never forget.”
• Salisbury Police Detective Russell DeSantis
DeSantis at the time was the director of campus police at Belmont Abbey College.
“At the time they were speculating whether it was an accident or an attack. It reminds you that you have to always have to be aware. You should never take safety for granted.”
He said when people complain about going through security checkpoints, they should remember it is for their protection.Contact reporter Shavonne Potts at 704-797-4253.

SALISBURY — Local emergency personnel will participate in a 9/11 service today at the Salisbury-Rowan Firefighters Memorial, adjacent to Chestnut Hill Cemetery at 1400 S. Main Street.
The public is invited to the 9:30 a.m. memorial service, which is to commemorate those who died in the 2001 terrorist attacks.
The keynote speaker at the the service is Frank Thomason, director of emergency services, a post he has held since 2004. Thomason began his 25-year career as communications supervisor for the county’s first 911 center before heading the emergency services department.
Other local events and services will be held at:
Livingstone College
• Sixth annual 9/11 remembrance ceremony. The ceremony will take place at 11 a.m. at the flag pole in front of the Price Administration Building.
The event is open to the public.
Faculty, staff, students and other community members will share their personal stories about 9/11, said Terri Stevenson, director of student activities.
Livingstone students, faculty and staff will release red, white and blue balloons that contain thoughts and wishes about 9/11.
Catawba College
• A special remembrance/ worship service at 9 p.m. at Omwake-Dearborn Chapel.
The service, which is led largely by students, will provide an “opportunity for our community to remember and hold in prayer all whose lives were impacted by the events of that day … which is to say all of us,” Chaplain Ken Clapp said via a listserv to all students and faculty.
The memo said there will be special emphasis placed on those who lost family members and friends.
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
• Civic projects
“Students are going away from memorial and more toward civic engagements,” said Paula Dibley, director of college relations, marketing and communications
During the lunchtime hour, students will make available voter registration information. There will also be opportunities for political parties to share information.
“Students expressed a desire to pivot toward service and civic engagements and remembrance of the day,” Dibley said.