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It was a day to remember, as members of the Calabash Lions Club, VFW and American Legion standing on the N.C. 130 overpass in Shallotte reminded passing motorists.
Many of those driving along U.S. 17 beneath them honked their horns to let the waving group know they hadn’t forgotten the seventh anniversary of 9/11, the day terrorist-directed planes brought down the World Trade Center towers in New York and also wrought destruction and death at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.
Last Thursday morning, Sept. 11, following an 8 a.m. Mass at Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church in North Myrtle Beach, S.C., a motorcade proceeded through Brunswick County.
It consisted of the FDNY-Carolinas Retirees Association, a procession of fire engines and emergency services personnel, as well as riders with the Brunswick County Concerned Bikers Association, the American Legion and Red Knights Motorcycle Club.
The motorcade continued northward in time for an annual 11 a.m. 9/11 memorial service in Brunswick Community College’s Victory Garden.
“Today we gather because we want to see our children gather the flowers from the seeds we plant today,” said the Rev. Robert Caswell at the start of the ceremony paying tribute to the 343 FDNY firefighters and emergency responders and nearly 3,000 people who perished that day.
“We especially want to remember the 343 comrades who made the supreme sacrifice,” said retired FDNY firefighter Mike Healy, standing in the garden’s Gallery of Heroes. “Behind me are our expressions of appreciation for the men who gave so much.”
He said it is estimated 25,000 people safely evacuated the Twin Towers that horrific day.
“We will never forget our 343 firefighters who gave their lives to save others,” Healy said.