V Corps rear detachment commander urges Marion County members to reflect on ‘unique’ Patriot Day
At a Patriot Day ceremony in Loretto, Kentucky, special guest speaker Col. Roger Deon Jr., director of Army Reserve Affairs and rear detachment commander of V Corps, encourages the community members to reconnect with the unity that Americans felt on Sept. 12, 2001. (Photo Credit: Eric Pilgrim, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

LORETTO, Ky. — As storm clouds delivered a mix of rain and sunshine, the rear detachment commander of V Corps poured encouragement over a small crowd gathered under a large tent at Loretto’s City Park Sept. 11.

Known for its history making Maker’s Mark bourbon, the small town reflected for the second consecutive year on the events of Sept. 11, 2001 that led to the deaths of Americans in New York City’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon, Flight 93 in Pennsylvania, and the wars that followed.

As a special guest speaker, Col. Roger Deon Jr. said while there are plenty of holidays that honor various contributions by the military and emergency services, Patriot Day is unique.

V Corps rear detachment commander urges Marion County members to reflect on ‘unique’ Patriot Day
Members of the Loretto Volunteer Fire Department strike the four fives and the tolling of the bell during the ceremony. (Photo Credit: Eric Pilgrim, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

“Patriot Day causes us first to remember the actual terrorist attacks on Sept. 11,” said Deon, who recapped the timeline of events that unfolded on a much sunnier day 21 years before, at times pausing to fight back emotions — “We remember the 2,977 non-hijackers who died that day.”

Deon said Patriot Day is also unique for another reason:

“There isn’t “X Group” and the rest. Patriot Day is a day for all of us,” said Deon. “There is only one group — us; and it asks each of us to reflect upon the events 21 years ago and focus our thoughts on the health and strength of this nation.”

Deon and others stood at each reverent moment of the ceremony, including the striking of the four fives and tolling of the fire bell by members of the Loretto Volunteer Fire Department, the singing of Amazing Grace, and a moment of silence broken by a 21-gun salute and the playing of taps.

V Corps rear detachment commander urges Marion County members to reflect on ‘unique’ Patriot Day
1 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – The 21-gun salute and the playing of taps was performed by the Marion County Veterans Honor Guard. (Photo Credit: Eric Pilgrim, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL
V Corps rear detachment commander urges Marion County members to reflect on ‘unique’ Patriot Day
2 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – (Photo Credit: Eric Pilgrim, Fort Knox News) VIEW ORIGINAL

Deon told the crowd that the toll for the ensuing Global War on Terror cost a minimum of 5,445 combat-related deaths between Iraq and Afghanistan, thousands of injuries, and upwards of $8 trillion to combat the spread of terrorism.

He said that division among Americans will be far more costly, urging them to embrace the Kentucky motto, “United We Stand, Divided We Fall,” and actively look for ways to build a stronger community.

“I ask you to follow this day,” Deon said, “with the unity of Sept. 12.”