OCEAN PINES — Residents and visitors from all over the region on Sunday held a ceremony commemorating the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attack on the United States. Dozens of people gathered around the Worcester County Veterans Memorial at Ocean Pines to witness the remembrance and pay homage to those who lost their lives on that fateful day.
The event was organized by Sharon O’Hare, who was aided in this "grassroots effort" by a group of friends. Despite having had only one meeting, the volunteers managed to put together a thoughtful and well-organized ceremony. She said she hopes that the commemoration will help people "remember those who lost their lives on that fateful day."
The ceremony began with a prayer led by Michael Davis, chaplain for the Showell Fire Department. Showell, Ocean Pines, and Berlin were all represented by firefighters, representing those who made sacrifices on Sept. 11, 2001 to save the lives of thousands of innocents.
Following the prayer was a rendition of the Star Spangled Banner sung by Sharon Sorrentino, who said later that it was "nice to stop and think, remember."
Guest speaker Rep. Andy Harris (R-1st) encouraged listeners to "never forget that day, what it means to our country and what it means to our future.”
Harris was followed by Ocean Pines Police Chief Dave Massey, who read the poem "Why?" which was written after the attack and which declared, "We will stand up and fight."
Another poem, "Firefighters Don’t Feel Like They’re Heroes," was read by Steve Rosen, president of the Ocean Pines Volunteer Fire Department. It conveyed the firefighters’ reluctance to accept credit for going to extraordinary lengths to save lives, when they are "just doing [their] jobs"
Chief organizer O’Hare told the audience, "For ten years, we have lived under the shadow of the twin towers." Almost 3,000 people died that day, the youngest victim being only two years old, she said.
Those deaths left 3,251 children without a parent, 1,609 adults lost a spouse and 411 first responders lost their lives.
After O’Hare’s speech, a poem was read by Jackie Todd, who had been in the Twin Towers during the first bombing in 1993. Entitled "The Power of One," the poem insisted that we are "one faith," "one family," "one soul," and "one people."
Massey closed the ceremony by presenting the memorial wreaths and paying respect to the victims of the attack.