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Terrorist Attacks Remembered At Albany Event

Chris Lehman

Communities around the country and here in Oregon gathered Wednesday on the 18th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks. 

That includes an event held each year on the front lawn of the Linn County Courthouse in Albany.

This year's ceremony featured remarked from American Legion Post 10 Commander David Solomon, who is a former New York City EMT who served as a first responder at Ground Zero on September 11, 2001. Solomon urged the crowd of more than 100 people to keep the memory of 9/11 alive, especially by educating younger people who weren't alive when the terrorist attacks happened.

The program featured music from a choir of students from Jefferson High School, as well as a performance of "Amazing Grace" by the Willamette Valley Public Safety Pipes.

The remembrance included a cermonial bell-ringing to honor the lives of the hundreds of firefighters lost in the attack on the World Trade Center in New York. A bell was stuck 20 times, as part an old tradition known as "striking the four fives." Firefighter John Dunworth of the Lebanon Fire District had the honor of striking the bell.

"I'm actually a native of New Jersey and I got my start in the fire service out there," he said afterward. "I grew up in the shadows of New York."

"Not to say that people out here don't take it personally, but I'm a little more intertwined with it," said Dunworth. "My hometown lost eight residents."

But while the 9/11 attacks happened far from Oregon's Willamette Valley, Dunworth said he doesn't think anyone in the area is at risk of forgetting about them. "I think anybody that has lived through that, and is old enough to remember it, they won't forget," he said.

Chris Lehman has been reporting on Oregon issues since 2006. He joined the KLCC news department in December 2018 and became News Director in March 2023. Chris was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. His public broadcasting career includes stops in Louisiana and Illinois. Chris has filed for national programs including “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”