Flags at half-staff to mark 9/11 anniversary

Across the country, American and state flags are being flown at half-staff to mark the 22-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs ordered
state government flags to be lowered, and President Joe Biden proclaimed a National Day of Prayer and Remembrance in honor of the nearly 3,000 innocent men and women who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

“Today, we lower flags in honor of the 2,977 who lost their lives on
9/11,” Hobbs said. “We can never forget what was taken from them, their families, and
our nation. On this day of reflection, let us remind ourselves that
while others try to divide us, we are stronger united.”

A joint resolution of Congress approved in 2001
designates September 11 as “Patriot Day,” and
directs that flags be lowered to half-staff from from sunrise to sundown on
September 11.

“Twenty-two years ago — on September 11, 2001 — 2,977 precious lives were
stolen from us in attacks of deliberate evil on our Nation,” the president said in his proclamation. “On the
National Days of Prayer and Remembrance, we come together to renew our
sacred vow:  Never forget. Never forget the parents, children, spouses,
friends, and loved ones we lost that day. Never forget the heroes who
stepped up to rescue their fellow Americans and help our communities
rebuild in the hours — and years — thereafter. And never forget our
obligation to honor their memories and service by building a safer and
more secure future for all.”

“To all the families of the victims who have had to endure the absence
of a loved one over the last two decades, I know that 22 years is both a
lifetime and no time at all,” Biden said. “The very memories that help us heal can
also open up the hurt and take us back to the moment the grief was raw —
to the moment when a loved one and their dreams were stolen from us in
an instant. Today, when that grief feels especially great, the First
Lady and I hold you close to our hearts.”

“We also join all those who are mourning the loss of patriots who
stepped up when their country needed them most. My mom believed the
greatest virtue of all was courage and that someday the bravery that
exists in every heart will be summoned,” the president said. “For many, that day was
September 11, 2001. Patriotic citizens and first responders ran into
the searing flames and crumbling buildings to save their fellow
Americans. And in the years that followed, thousands more served and
sacrificed to prevent another attack on the United States.”

“These brave heroes remind us that — through all that has changed
over these last two decades — the enduring resolve of the American
people has never wavered. What was destroyed in the attacks, we have
repaired,” he said.  “What was threatened, we have fortified.  We have never ceased
in our mission to defend ourselves against those who seek to do us harm
and to deliver justice to those responsible for attacks against our
people. And during our darkest hour, we regained our light by finding
something all too rare — unity.”

“Today, the charge left for all of us is to find renewal and
resolve in remembrance. For it is not enough to only reflect on the
souls we lost on September 11th; we must also continue to build a nation
worthy of their highest aspirations — one that remembers, for all our
flaws and disagreements, there is nothing we cannot accomplish when we
stand together and defend with all our hearts that which makes us unique
in the world:  our democracy.”