2017 marked the 16th anniversary of the the September 11, 2001 attack on our nation. For those who recently served, it is the closest we can come to understanding what Pearl Harbor meant to our grandparents. This year in an effort to honor those we lost, we carried a flag bearing the names of all the first responders and civilians who were killed on 9.11.2001, over 40 miles on a route across the Treasure Valley. This event was called Idaho’s 9.11 Moving Tribute.
0846 Flight 11 Hit the North Tower
We began at 0846 at Lucky Peak Reservoir, the same time Flight 11 hit the North Tower. Over 60 people carried the flag throughout the day, stopping only to mark the times the planes struck and when the towers collapsed. At 0937, when the Pentagon was hit by Flight 77, we had the family of Brady Howell, one of two Idahoans killed in that moment, carrying the flag in his honor. Ten different police and fire departments provide escort throughout the entire nine-hour tribute, a great symbolism of the respect between first responders and the military.
The pillar organizations of Mission43 came together just like they do on a daily basis supporting the military community in Idaho. Each took responsibility for a leg of the relay by finding volunteers within their organizations to help carry the flag, and by ensuring they met the next pillar organization in time for the hand-off.
60 People Helped Carry the Flag Over 40 Miles.
At the end of the 40 miles, we arrived at the future home of a Mission43 Firebase, the Caldwell Veterans Memorial Hall. We had food, drinks, and brought closure to the day with a ceremony led by Noah Siple. We couldn’t have been more proud of the way 9.11 was honored by the leaders, volunteers, and public who took part in this tribute.
Keep an eye out for next year. We will be looking to do something bigger and bolder and will need even more people to help carry the flag in honor of September 11th.