News20 Years Later: Texans Remember 9/11

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Brazos Valley Veterans Memorial expands 9/11 memorial on 20th anniversary

Posted at 1:25 PM, Sep 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-09 22:26:59-04

COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Those of us who lived through the attacks on Washington, New York and Pennsylvania still bear the scars of that day 20 years later.

Thanks to the efforts of Texas Task Force 1, a piece of the World Trade Center sits in Veterans park as a memorial.

"We felt is very important that that 20th anniversary be recognized and observed for the almost 3000 people that lost her life on that day," said Steve Beachy, Special Assistant to the President of the Brazos Valley Veterans Memorial. "And all the ones that have served since then."

Brazos Valley residents will gather at Veterans Memorial Park in College Station on 9/11 at 11 a.m. to honor those lost and those who've fought to protect us in the decades since.

It's also where the Brazos Valley Veteran's Memorial committee will unveil three new statues honoring first responders of 9/11 and other disasters and another, depicting of the soldiers protecting our country during the free event.

The new additions will join a piece of the World Trade Center in the section dedicated to honoring September 11th.

"So, the firefighter in the law enforcement, they'll be facing the beam" Beachy said. "The title of that those two statues is 'Never Forget.' The Special Operations soldier will be facing away, representing that he's got their back, and the title of that one is never again."

Grimes County artist, J. Payne Lara, known for his lifelike sculptures, is adding to the collection again at the park. The Navasota artist has completed works at the site since 2010.

The "War on Terror" is latest addition in the park's long-term plan to honor America's 17 major wars and conflicts.

"There'll be a lot of very permanent memories and emotions that surround this because it becomes very personal for a lot of them," Beachy said about the new memorials.

The event's speaker retired Lt. Gen. P.K. Carlton, the former Air Force Surgeon General who organized triage and medical care for survivors in the aftermath of the Pentagon attack.

Beachy said Veterans Park, with its special centerpiece from the twin towers, is the perfect place to remember and honor the American experience.

"Way I like to describe it best is with the Veterans Memorial and the Veterans theme recognized throughout the park," Beachy said. "This is the place where duty, honor and country meet the pursuit of happiness."