Southern Colorado ceremonies honoring the victims and heroes of 9/11

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo — Sixteen years ago, nearly 3,000 people were killed when American passenger planes hijacked by Al Qaeda operatives crashed into the World Trade Center.

It’s still a somber day as remembrance ceremonies are happening across the United States, including in southern Colorado.

A piece of American history, salvaged from the wreckage of the World Trade Center, sits right on campus at UCCS, where students and people in the community can come reflect on that tragic day.

Another piece of twisted steel from the Twin Towers can be seen at the Air Force Academy. That’s where cadets spent Monday, September 11 honoring the lives lost.

Brandon Webster said, “I remember it like it was yesterday honestly.”

Three wreaths were laid for each place the planes crashed.

“I have a lot of personal friends that lost family members during the 9/11 attacks,” said Webster.

Though these cadets were very young when the towers came down, like most Americans it’s something they’ll never forget.

Sharee Acosta said, “My dad is in the U.S. Air Force Reserves and he was called in that day and I wasn’t sure when he would come home.”

“I was actually living in New Jersey in kindergarten and I remember a lot of my friends were out of school and it really impacted me because a lot of them were gone and then the next day they were really, really sad,” said Webster.

For 24 hours, cadets are running a relay around the Terrazzo in honor of the endurance of the first responders who sacrificed their lives to save others.

But the beauty that comes from something so tragic is it has been a source of inspiration for many of our future service members.

“My father was a volunteer fireman and my uncle was a fireman and that was a huge impact on my service to this country and I feel like it’s one of those events that really impacted the reasons why I wanted to join the military,” Webster said.

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