LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Saturday will mark the nine year anniversary of the national tragedy at the World Trade Center, and lake area officials reflect on why it is important to never forget the significance of the tragedy.
"Even though it's been nine years, as time goes by the importance of remembering becomes all the more important," said Mayor Randy Roach of Lake Charles.
Roach recalls how the nation reacted to the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center that September day almost one decade ago.
"Nine years ago on September 10th we were doing the same things we are doing today," said Roach. "On September 11th we were attacked and instantly this nation pulled together like we had never seen it before."
The city of Lake Charles is remembering those fallen Americans through a special memorial near the lakefront.
The memorial consists of two beams from the World Trade Center that stand parallel to one another and resemble the twin towers.
The memorial also includes thousands of pieces of stained glass that run along the sides of the memorial to represent each person that died in the attack.
Next to the glass there are embedded hand prints of lake area residents as well.
"What this represents is a touch of the community connecting to the lives of those who were perished on that day," said Roach.
But there are two southwest Louisiana ties to the terrorist attacks, as Russell Keene of Sulphur died while working in the World Trade Center.
Another southwest Louisianan killed in the attack was Kevin Yokum of Lake Charles, who was killed while working as a young Naval Petty Officer at the Pentagon.
As lake area residents remember these two individuals along with those others who died on that September day, the mayor reminds us that it affects us as more than a nation as a whole.
"Not as a nation, but as a community that respects those same values and principals that we respect and value as American citizens," said Roach.
In remembrance of all those who lost their lives on September 11th, the governor has asked that all flags in Louisiana be flown at half staff until sunset Saturday evening.