Vernon Township has not had a formal ceremony honoring those who perished on September 11. This year, Mayor Howard Burrell insisted that a remembrance of the almost 3,000 victims take place on the actual date.
“We need to acknowledge and remember these innocent people who so cruelly had their lives taken,” Burrell said. “We honor the first responders as well and we keep those in our thoughts and prayers who today still suffer from illnesses related to 9/11.”
He spoke of the four hijacked aircrafts, Flights 11, 175,77 and 93. Commenting that Flight 93 was on the path to crashing into either the Capitol building or the White House. The mayor praised the efforts of the 31 heroes aboard Flight 93 who worked together to thwart the plan, even though it meant losing their lives.
“Eighty percent of Americans say the nation today is dreadfully divided,” Burrell said, comparing our society today with the heroes of Flight 93. With free will, positive action, and by working together, we can change negativity into positivity and again become one nation under God, he said.
He concluded by asking God to bless the 9/11 victims, all those still struggling, and to “bless our little town of Vernon and the USA.”
The ceremony continued with a heartfelt prayer by the Rev. Connie Squire of the Vernon United Methodist Church, a gun salute by members of the Vernon VFW, and the solemn playing of Taps.