RANDOLPH, NJ- In their annual “Patriot’s Day” ceremony, the Randolph VFW Post 7333 honored those lost in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

“First I want to offer a big “thank you” to all who show up for these events, and also to the VFW Post for continuing to hold these events year after year, because it’s important to our country that we never forget,” said NJ Assemblyman Anthony Bucco. 

Bucco continued, “While September 11, 2001 started out as one of the darkest days in our history, it actually turned out to be one of the brightest.  While the terrorists hoped to bring our country to its knees, it had the opposite effect as America didn’t kneel.  “We stood tall and proud in the aftermath.”

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About 75 people had gathered for the ceremony, held outside in front of the flagpole at the VFW building on Carrol Road in Randolph.

Randolph Mayor Mark Forstenhausler shared some words remembering those who selflessly rushed to our country’s aid on that dark day, and continue to do so today.

“Seventeen years ago on this day, the United States of America was suddenly attacked, but our brave first responders, including firemen, police, and EMS workers responded to that first battle,” said Forstenhausler. “After that a new generation of Americans answered the call to defend our country.” 

Bob Hugin, a Republican from Summit who is hoping to unseat incumbent Democrat Bob Menendez from his term in the U.S. Senate, attended the service and spoke as well. 

“While this is a day of sadness and a day of reflection, it is also a day for all of us to think about the strengths of this great nation,” said Hugin.  “This nation at its very core is the beacon of life, liberty, freedom, and opportunity in the entire world.”

VFW Chaplain Richard Reck read a prayer, and Emmerson Crooks sang God Bless America to conclude the ceremony.