Government

North Salem Commemorates 9/11

Alan Keeley plays "Taps." Credits: Photos by Gabrielle Bilik
William Moore, a member of the Westchester County Firefighters Emerald Society Pipes and Drums and the local American Legion, performed “Amazing Grace” on the bagpipes. Credits: Photos by Gabrielle Bilik
The North Salem High School Madrigals singing during the ceremony. Credits: Photos by Gabrielle Bilik
Rev. Rufus Kenny of St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Somers leads a prayer. Credits: Photos by Gabrielle Bilik
Herbert Geller, a World War II veteran and member of the local American Legion Post, delivers his speech. Credits: Photos by Gabrielle Bilik

NORTH SALEM, N.Y.--Dozens gathered at the North Salem Fire House on Titicus Road to mark the 16th anniversary of 9/11.

Veterans and their families attended the event, as well as local officials including Sen. Terrence Murphy, North Salem Town Supervisor Warren Lucas, and Councilman Martin Aronchick.

The attacks claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people, including North Salem resident Vincent G. Halloran, 43, a lieutenant with Ladder Company 8 in Tribeca, who was killed while helping evacuate people in the North Tower. 

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Dr. Kenneth Freeston, superintendent of schools, was among those who spoke. He shared the story of family aboard United Airlines Flight 175, the plane that struck the South Tower. Peter Hanson, 32; his wife, Sue Jue Kim Hanson, 35; and their 2-year-old daughter, Christine, were taking a family trip. He called his father, Lee, from the plane and they spoke on the phone for 20 minutes before the plane crashed. 

“So for me, never forgetting means remembering Peter Hanson,” he said. “I know all of us have stories like that.”

Mark Morin, chairman of the Board of Commissioners for the Croton Falls Fire District, welcomed those who gathered, and the North Salem Cub and Boy Scout troops led the Pledge of Allegiance. Pastor Timothy Wagner, chaplain of the Croton Falls Fire District and pastor of the Croton Falls Community Church, gave the  invocation, and the North Salem High School Band played the national anthem. Herb Geller, an Army veteran and commander of American Legion Post 1866, gave  a speech, and the Rev. Rufus Kenny of St. Joseph’s R.C. Church in Somers led a prayer. The North Salem High School Madrigals sang “God Bless America,” and Alan Keeley, North Salem resident and member of the Croton Falls Fire Department, performed the hand solute and “Taps.” William Moore, a member of the Westchester County Firefighters Emerald Society Pipes and Drums and the local American Legion, performed “Amazing Grace” on the bagpipes.

Afterward, refreshments including hot dogs, pulled pork and ice cream were offered, courtesy of the Croton Falls Fire District.

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