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Burlington Police and Fire Departments Invite Community to Ceremony Marking 20th Anniversary of 9/11 Attacks

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BURLINGTON – The Burlington Police Department and Burlington Fire Department invite the community to attend a ceremony marking the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

The ceremony will be held on Saturday, Sept. 11, starting at 9 a.m. on the Town Common. The event will remember first responders and innocent civilians who lost their lives on 9/11, and recognize first responders who serve Burlington today.

The ceremony will reinforce words spoken in the aftermath of 9/11: “We Shall Never Forget.”

The Town will unveil a new memorial on the Common, in the shape of the Pentagon. The memorial will surround the current memorial, two rails that were located beneath the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.

The ceremony will remember:
Thomas F. McGuinness Jr., a co-pilot on American Airlines Flight 11Robert Jay Hayes, a 1981 Burlington High School graduate, and a passenger on Flight 11James Trentini, a Burlington High School teacher, and his wife, Mary Trentini, who were passengers on Flight 11Ryan D. Fortini, a 1995 Burlington High School graduate and N.Y. State Trooper, who passed away from occupational cancer related to his search and rescue assignment to the World Trade Center site following the collapse of the Twin Towers.Wreaths will be placed on the Town Common in their honor.

A wreath also shall be placed on the Town Common in honor of Burlington resident and U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Gregory E. MacDonald, who died on June 25, 2003, while serving his country during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Wreaths also will be placed in honor of those first responders who ran toward danger to save others and gave their lives on 9/11, as well as to honor first responders.

The ceremony also will remember those who perished at the Pentagon and in the fields of Shanksville, PA, and those who have lost their lives as the result of 9/11-related illness.

Local officials will speak. The Burlington High School Chorus will perform, while the Burlington High School Marching Band will play the Call to Colors and Taps. Bagpiper Joe McGrath will participate.

The Burlington Fire Department and Burlington Police Honor Guards will attend, as well as representatives from both departments.

The ceremony will end with the “Tolling of the Bells,” a fire service tradition which reflects respect and honor. The first set of five bells will symbolize when the first tower collapsed; the second set of five bells will symbolize when the second tower collapsed.

The Town will be observing all state COVID-19 protocols, including masking and physical distancing, that are in effect on the day of the event.

For more information, contact Bob Hogan at 781-771-1570.


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