9/11 Ten Years Later NOW FEATURING
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Patuxent Habitat for Humanity ReStore (443) 964-4387
8900 Chesapeake Avenue • North Beach, MD 20714
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Call (301) 737-6273 and we’ll pick up your items! OPEN SATURDAYS FROM 9 AM – 4 PM WEDNESDAYS THROUGH FRIDAYS 10 AM – 5 PM 18 Thursday, September 22, 2011 Chesapeake Current
When the planes came crashing down on 9/11/01, the Veteran’s Memorial Park in Chesapeake Beach was still just a vision to then Mayor Gerald Donovan and others. Construction had only just begun. “We had more than a thousand people come to a candlelight memorial on September 15, 2001, right here,” Donovan told the standing room only crowd that turned out for a ceremony at the same spot ten years later. “Like most good things, it took a lot of people working on it to make it reality,” Donovan added, as he recounted the history of how the park came about. “As I come over that hill, I consider myself very fortunate to be here. And our flag represents honor Clare O’Shea belts out “God Bless America” as a hundred white and dignity, and it’s perfect there. And after 9/11 birds are released during the 9/11 ceremony marking the tenth there was such a sense of unity. We need to get that anniversary at Chesapeake Beach Veteran’s Memorial Park. sense of unity back first and foremost for all Americans. It’s time we thought about how we all got here – our families were all immigrants.” The park features a fountain and benches designed for ceremonies, like this one. At one side of the Veteran’s Memorial is a brick garden “honor roll” recreated from a photo of an earlier honor roll memorial for veterans created nearby. Donovan said 9/11 should be a time of not only remembering the victims, but also remembering people who have personally touched you. “Each one of us has our own ‘honor roll’ – people in your life who have been special to you. And each of us can be on someone else’s honor roll,” he added. Current Chesapeake Beach Mayor Bruce Wahl led the ceremony, which was well-attended by local elected officials. The quartet, “Fathers & Sons,” with members from Owings and Prince Frederick sang a stirring a cappella barbershop rendition of the “National Anthem.” Even though the sun continued shining, a light rain began to fall on the crowd as US House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer said a few words, then remembered the 9/11 victims with a moment of silence. State Senate President Mike Miller said Maryland lost more people in the 9/11 terrorist attacks than any other state. Dancers from Abigail Francisco School of Classical Ballet in North Beach performed a graceful “peace dance” to the John Lennon song, “Imagine.” Clare O’Shea of Chesapeake Beach, our Chesapeake Current Account Executive, closed the ceremony with a rousing rendition “God Bless America,” reminiscent of Kate Smith. “When Pat Carpenter asked me to sing “God Bless America” at the 9/11 Memorial Ceremony, I was so honored and felt privileged and grateful and terrified. I have sung for most of my life, and I think I am good. But I had goose bumps,” O’Shea says. “This assignment represented the most challenging one of my whole life, as a performer,” O’Shea adds. “This song….what it means to us. I refer to my 9/11 moment - ten years ago, at the last minute, the day before, I changed my reservation from American Airlines Flight 77, that was supposed to fly out of Dulles to Los Angeles, at 8:30 a.m. on Tuesday, September 11th. That was the flight that hit the Pentagon. I am so grateful to be here today! It’s by the grace of God that I am alive. I asked the audience to help, to please sing along with this song and pray for me.” At just the right moment, a flock of beautiful white birds was released from behind the fountain (see related article). Photographer Nancy Feuerle perfectly captured the moment as Dancers from Abigail Francisco School of Clare belted out her finale…. ‘God Bless America, My Home Classical Ballet perofmed to John Lennon’s Sweet Home.’ “Imagine.”
Girls Give Sunflowers Emily and Caitlyn Tolomei of Chesapeake Beach set up a lemonade stand to raise money before 9/11 and wanted to do something nice for those affected. “They couldn’t think of much, so I suggested maybe they should buy sunflowers and hand them out at the Memorial Service in Chesapeake Beach, which they did.”