By Connor DavisSeptember 12, 2017
FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. -- The Directorate of Emergency Services hosted the installation's Patriot Day remembrance ceremony Sept. 11 at Brown Parade Field to recognize the national day of mourning and honor the fallen.
The U.S. flag flew at half-staff as the national anthem played, and the timeline of events from Sept. 11, 2001, was read.
"The terrorists on that day tested our resolve," said Maj. William J. Owens, provost marshal, Fort Huachuca U.S. Army Garrison. "And our resolve and will are strong."
Owens said he is often asked what the strongest weapon is in the U.S. arsenal.
"My reply is this, 'The strongest weapon in the United States of America is the patriotic American.'"
Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels emphasized the importance of remembering those who died that day, their families, and the heroes and first responders who went into the wreckage to save lives.
"We must never forget those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our personal freedom, liberty and safety," he said. "God bless all those who continue to serve; you are my heroes."
Wreaths were placed as a symbol of remembrance by Owens, Dannels, Fort Huachuca Fire Chief Bradley Nicholson and Fry Fire District Chief Mark Savage. Taps was played, and a 21-gun salute was fired, marking the solemnity of the occasion.
After the ceremony, Owens elaborated on the importance of the event.
"Just the simple act of remembering," he said. "If I don't set that groundwork, if everyone around us doesn't set that groundwork, then the future is not set for our kids."
At a separate event at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, President Donald Trump held a moment of silence, then said, "Our values will endure, our people will thrive, our nation will prevail, and the memory of our loved ones will never, ever die."