LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - A remembrance ceremony was held at the Fort Polk Firehouse this morning at 9 a.m. to pay respects to the 9/11 terrorist attacks that took place 18 years ago today.
Keynote Speaker Col. Ryan Roseberry says he can’t believe how long it’s been.
“I mean those of us who’ve lived through it can’t believe it’s 18 years. It feels like yesterday," Roseberry said. Some of our newest recruits they were born during this attack. So it’s important we reflect on this tragic time that perpetuated 18 years of consistent and perpetual conflict.”
Family members, elected officials, military members, and veterans gathered to pay their respects. Roseberry says he remembers the exact moment it happened.
“One of my staffers came and whispered in my ear and said ‘Hey Sir you need to come see the T.V., somethings happened in New York, one of the buildings is on fire.’ So I grabbed my battalion commander we went in there and looked together, and as we watched it that second plane went into the other tower," Roseberry said. "The chills went up and down our spines because we all knew at that point, our lives were going to change significantly.”
Fire Chief Michael Kuk remembers the aftermath of the 2001 tragedy.
“I did go there in November, and I worked with the man who is now the Chief Chaplin of the New York City Fire Department," Kuk said. "I worked with him going to 4 or 5 funerals a day. It really was a tragic event. Innocent people died, for no cause.”
Both men reflected on the importance of the ceremony.
“We’re going to remember our fallen soldiers and our first responders, and honor their efforts during this time," Roseberry said. "Also the family members that have been affected with this.”
“Ceremonies like this I think also keep alive the historical importance of that tragic day because our youth need to remember that America was built upon sacrifice," Kuk said.
Bells tolled at in Fort Polk at the time of each attack that took place on the devastating day 18 years ago. A wreath was laid in remembrance of the victims lost.