NEW BRITAIN â€“ Itâ€™s been 19 years since the tragedy that occurred on September 11, 2001, and while everyone is currently in the midst of another unprecedented time, many local towns are still hosting events to commemorate the day and the lives that were lost.
â€śTragedy not only impacted our nation on that day 19 years ago, but it affected so many families who live here in Connecticut and had loved ones taken from them all too tragically,â€ť Gov. Ned Lamont said. â€śWe will forever remember each of those whose lives were taken all too soon and honor the heroism of the first responders who courageously put their own lives on the line to protect complete strangers. We also pay tribute to the brave men and women of the U.S. military who serve our nation and protect our freedoms. Letâ€™s use this anniversary as a reminder that we are stronger as a nation when we unite together and remain committed to improving our world for the better.â€ť
Friday morning will begin with U.S. and state flags in Connecticut being flown at half-staff from sunrise to sunset. Accordingly, since no flag should fly higher than the U.S. flag, all other flags â€“ including state, municipal, corporate or otherwise â€“ should also be lowered during this same duration of time.
In addition, the state will illuminate the Pearl Harbor Memorial Bridge in New Haven (the Q Bridge) in red, white, and blue lights beginning at dusk on the evenings of Thursday and Friday.
At 8:30 a.m. Friday morning the Newington Volunteer Fire Department will be holding a small remembrance at Company One Fire House located at 1485 Main Street. Each year the station honors Newington firefighter Jay Cole, Jr. and firefighter Francis Kochanowicz.
At 8:45 a.m. the New Britain Police Department, Fire Department and Emergency Medical Services will be holding a remembrance ceremony that will be streamed live on the New Britain Police Department Facebook page. During the ceremony there will be a moment of silence to commemorate each attack on the twin towers, a prayer will be given by NBPD Police Chaplain Thomas Mills, and a singer from New Britain High School will perform the Star Spangled Banner and God Bless America. Bagpipes will be provided by the Police Pipes and Drums of Waterbury.
At 8:46 a.m. Southington town and public safety officials will hold a ceremony at the townâ€™s 9/11 Memorial, located at the corner of Summer and Main streets in Plantsville.
At 9 a.m. the Bristol Fire Department will hold its annual 9/11 wreath service at its headquarters located at 171 North Main St.
At 11 a.m. the Northwest Vets group will be hosting a short memorial ceremony at the Central Park War on Global Terrorism Memorial in front of City Hall in New Britain.
Everyone that attends the events is requested to wear a mask and maintain social distancing.
â€śWe will forever remember and never forget the nearly 3,000 lives taken from us so tragically and cruelly - mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, friends and coworkers,â€ť Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz said. â€śIn the minutes, hours and days that followed one of the darkest days in our nationâ€™s history, we saw courageous acts that reminded us of Americaâ€™s resiliency when we come together as one. Our first responders heroically put themselves in harmâ€™s way to save others. Ordinary people risked their lives to take on hijackers. Families turned their unimaginable loss into hope. Today and every day, we honor the memories of all those we lost on September 11, and thank our first responders and military personnel for protecting us and defending our country.â€ť
To pay homage to those who lost their lives at any point you can visit Connecticutâ€™s official 9/11 memorial located on a peninsula at Sherwood Island State Park in Westport. It features a stone engraved with the names of the people with ties to Connecticut who were killed in the attacks. This exact location is where many people gathered in the immediate aftermath of the attacks to observe the devastation in New York City. The site was also used by the Connecticut National Guard in the following days and weeks as a staging area for Connecticutâ€™s relief efforts.