By Mr. Eric Kowal (Picatinny)September 11, 2018
PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. - A 21-gun salute with three howitzers was part of a wreath ceremony here on Sept. 11 in remembrance of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks on the United States.
For the 21-gun salute, Marines with 2nd Battalion, 25th Marine Corps Regiment, Golf Company, fired blank rounds at the Visitor Center parking lot, near the main entrance to Picatinny near Route 15.
The wreath was placed on the 9/11 memorial marker by Picatinny Arsenal Garrison Commander Lt. Col. Samuel Morgan, and Command Sgt. Maj. Anneka Ford.
Several feet away from the memorial marker are three, red oak memorial trees for New Jersey Sailors--Cmdr. Robert E. Dolan, Cmdr. Patrick Dunn and Aviation Warfare Systems Operator Petty Officer 1st Class Joseph J. Pycior, Jr.--who died in the Pentagon attack during 9/11.
Also close to the memorial marker is a red-oak tree memorial for Sgt. Steven D. Checo, the first New Jersey Soldier to die in Afghanistan. Sgt. Checo died on Dec. 21, 2002, from gunshot wounds received during a firefight near Shkin, Afghanistan.
Those four, red-oak tree memorials are part of 174 such memorials throughout Picatinny that have been planted and dedicated for New Jersey service members who have died in overseas operations since Sept. 11, 2001.
Thousands of Americans and people from other nations died as a result of two aircraft attacks that caused the collapse of the World Trade Center's Twin Towers in New York City, the aircraft attack on the Pentagon, and the downing of United Airlines Flight 93 into a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, on Sept. 11, 2001.