Prince William residents and County officials gathered Wednesday at the Prince William County Government Complex to remember the 22 Prince William Residents who died in the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
Prince William Chairman Corey A. Stewart used the words “brutal, horrific, sad and devastating” to describe the
loss of life 12 years ago.
“Prince William County experienced its own heartbreaking loss,” Stewart said. “Today we come together to remember and honor those we lost from our community, a community that cares about its neighbors, a community so impacted by the events of 9/11 that we are committed to providing a place where others will be reminded that real people in our community experienced profound loss that fateful day.”
During the ceremony, the crowd of over 300 people paid their respects to those who died on Sept. 11. They visited the Liberty Memorial in Freedom Park for tranquil remembrance. They also visit the new World Trade Center Steel Monument that was recently erected on the ellipse near the Liberty Memorial, with beams from the World Trade Center.
The monument consists of three beams leaning together at angles rise to 22 feet and depicts the chaos of the fallen towers. A fourth beam stands upright, apart from the others, to testify to the certainty of American resilience.
Stewart said the monument was “raw and stark” as a reminder of a “brutal, murderous attack against the American people,” and quoted Architect Martin Santini who designed the memorial saying, “I think people should touch it and have a connection to it. It’s the most earth shaking event that we’ve ever experienced in our lifetime. Now, we have a place for people in our area to go to experience a part of history that changed our lives, our community and our country forever.”
To conclude the event, as the sun set and the glow of luminaries cast light upon the path between the memorial and the monument, Stewart read aloud the names of Prince William residents who lost their lives. Bagpipes sang out Amazing Grace during a moment of reflection, and the bugler played Taps to honor the fallen:
Sergeant First Class John J. Chada, U.S. Army, Retired
Storekeeper Third Class Jamie L. Fallon, U.S. Navy
Amelia V. Fields
Lt. Col. Robert J. Hymel, U.S. Air Force, Retired
Sergeant Major Lacey B. Ivory, U.S. Army
Judith L. Jones
David W. Laychak
James T. Lynch, Jr.
Gene E. Maloy
Robert J. Maxwell
Molly L. McKenzie
Craig J. Miller
Diana B. Padro
Rhonda S. Rasmussen
Edward V. Rowenhorst
Donald D. Simmons
Jeff L. Simpson
Cheryle D. Sincock
Chief Information Systems Technician Gregg H. Smallwood, U.S. Navy
Sergeant Major Larry L. Strickland, U.S. Army
Sandra L. White