freedom walk

People take part in last year's Freedom Walk in Jackson to observe 9/11. This year's walk will start following a short ceremony at the covered bridge at 5:30 p.m. (JAMIE GEMMITI PHOTO)

CONWAY — Community observances in North Conway and Jackson will be held today to observe the 18th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.

State Rep. Steve Woodcock (D-Conway), who is also an Army veteran, retired school administrator and American Legion Post 95 member, will lead the 9/11 ceremonies in North Conway’s Schouler Park.

Community members, guests to the valley and firefighters, police and EMTs are requested to form at the park at 8:30 a.m. The service will begin exactly at 8:46 a.m. to coincide with the first hijacked plane crashing into the North Tower of the World Trade Center on 9/11, said Woodcock.

Close to 3,000 people were killed that day (265 on the four hijacked planes, including the 19 terrorists; 2,606 in the World Trade Cente;r and in the surrounding area; and 125 at the Pentagon).

After the first attack, another hijacked jet was flown into the South Tower at 9:03 a.m., followed by a plane that crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington, Va., at 9:37 and the final crash at 10:07 a.m. in Shanksville, Pa., field after a group of passengers decided to storm the cockpit of the hijacked Boeing 747.

The brief ceremony will be preceded by members of Kennett High School Task Force Eagles distributing American Flags in the park.

Pastor Sue Davidson of the Center Conway Methodist Church and other local clergy will begin the service with a moment of silent prayer, followed by the ringing of the bell four times by Post 95’s David Haskell, symbolizing the four 9/11 crash sites and their victims.

A group singing of "God Bless America" followed by the laying of roses at the base of the United States flag by representatives of local emergency services and Helen Goss, representing the civilians lost that day.

The ceremony will close with the playing of taps by Kennett High School students Abby Lyman and Molly Damon.

In Jackson, the Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce will hold its annual "America Supports You — Freedom Walk" at 5 p.m., with the procession set to begin at the Jackson Covered Bridge Route 16 side.

The walk will commence immediately following a few words from invited guests, a moment of silence, the Pledge of Allegiance and the National Anthem sung by Dallas Bell at 5:30 p.m. The first 40 people to sign in will receive a complimentary T-shirt and American flag.

For more information, go to jacksonnh.com or call (603) 383-9356.

Putting 9/11 in perspective on Wednesday will be American Legion Post 95 Cmdr. Jim Lefebvre who will give a talk at the Lobster Trap Restaurant on West Side Road at 5:30 p.m. As part of Post 95's bimonthly meeting, Lefebvre will speak about his experiences on 9/11 working with military personnel at the Pentagon at the time of the attack.

The dinner is open to the public. Post 95 normally meets the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month at 116 Kearsarge St. in North Conway Village at 7 p.m. For more information, call Lefebvre at (603) 356-7627.

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