POINT PLEASANT — City officials, first responders, law enforcement officers and residents gathered yesterday morning at the Riverfront Park in Point Pleasant to remember together the tragedy that struck America 18 years ago.
Mayor Brian Billings gave the welcome and introductions. This annual ceremony is hosted by members of American Legion Post #23 and its ladies auxiliary.
Pastor Jonathan Pinson reminisced on where he was on Sept. 11, 2001, then just a 16-year-old high school student attending what he thought would be just a normal school day.
“That morning on a tranquil Tuesday it would end with the murder of 2,977 innocent lives,” said Pinson. “On this day 18 years ago, 19 terrorists who had their minds filled with hate and delusion and their hearts filled with harm and destruction hijacked four airplanes and carried out a series of cowardly, suicide attacks against innocent unsuspecting targets.”
He can also remember the day following.
“I can recall not only Sept. 11, but I can recall Sept. 12. I can recall on Sept. 12 as continued efforts for search of survivors, as the death toll continued to rise and as recovery efforts began and were continued. I can recall the realization that swept across our country as we called out to God for protection, for strength, for mercy. I can recall public officials from the highest offices in our land begged every American to go to God on behalf of our country, on behalf of those families who had lost loved ones. I can recall the spirit of unity that swept across our country, I can recall the national pride…,” said Pinson. “On this day Sept. 11, 2019, we remember, we remember Sept. 11, 2001, we remember Sept. 12, 2001, may God bless you and may God bless the United States of America.”
Following Pinson, first responders and law enforcement from the Point Pleasant Police Department, Mason County EMS, Point Pleasant Fire Department and the Mason County Sheriff’s Department tied a ribbon on a memorial wreath. Then a rendition of “Proud to be an American” was performed.
In closing, the members of American Legion Post #23 and its ladies auxiliary thanked everyone who came out to the ceremony as well as their color guard. The new Post Commander Jim Doss was also introduced.
Erin (Perkins) Johnson is a staff writer for Ohio Valley Publishing. Reach her at (304) 675-1333, extension 1992.