Curtis Meyer reporter
“It’s just important to remember, it’s done so much to shape our culture today, and we just need to remember,” said Adam Parish, ROTC cadet.
This past Sunday marked twenty years since the attacks on of Sept. 11, 2001. In memory of that event, the Pitt State ROTC held a remembrance to honor those victims who died.
At 8:45 a.m, the group of cadets and officers gathered by the cannon on the northwest corner of Carnie Smith Stadium. They fired the cannon, and read off a list of names of each victim, while one person did a push up for each name.
“We’re doing one pushup per each victim that was killed on 9/11, I think it comes out to a little over 2900 people,” said ROTC captain Brody Holmes.
Using a flip over scoreboard, they counted each name as it was read off. Officers and cadets took turns, alternating between doing pushups and counting off names. After approximately thirty minutes, they fired the cannon again.
“We are firing the cannon with one shell for every plane that went down, so one for the Pentagon, one for each tower, and one for flight 93,” Holmes said.
On Sept. 11, 2001, four different flights took off headed for California. However, members of the militant extremist group Al Qaeda had hijackers on each plane. The first two planes hit the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. At 8:46, they hit the first tower, and the second at 9:03.
Following this, they crashed the third plane into the Pentagon. The final plane crashed into a empty field near Shanksville, Penn.
The remembrance held Sunday was to honor those victims, both civilian and military. Approximately twenty different ROTC members were present, and all participated in the ceremony. Though hosted and coordinated by the ROTC, the general public was welcome to participate in the pushups.
“I remember being a freshman in high school, walking into class and seeing the second plane hit, and it made my decision to join the military at that point, so I think it’s good, just like Pearl Harbor, to remember everyone of those victims. Not only that, but how many people signed up and joined, and fought and died in that conflict that happened after 9/11,” Holmes said.
Actions to combat terrorism immediately following the Sept. 11 attacks were called the “War on Terror” and was fought primarily in Afghanistan. Al Qaeda’s leader, Osama Bin Laden, was killed a decade later, and since then, Al Qaeda has ceased to be a direct threat to the United States.