CLEARFIELD – With the 20th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001 approaching, Clearfield Borough Council on Thursday night discussed tentative plans to honor those lives lost in the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington, D.C, and Somerset County.
Borough Operations Manager Leslie Stott envisioned a “special moment” that not only honored the lives lost 20 years ago, but also honored those that still protect us today.
“Normally we just have a smaller ceremony at the [Clearfield County] Courthouse,” Stott explained, “but I really think that this year we need to make it special.”
Scott, along with Fire Chief Todd Kling and Police Chief Vincent McGinnis, agreed that though events will be held in the borough, they should include outside entities.
Kling said events should include other first responders, giving Lawrence Township police and fire departments, Clearfield County Sheriff’s Department and Curwensville Borough police and fire as examples. Stott and council agreed.
Currently Stott’s tentative plans include having the 9/11 ceremony begin at 8:45 a.m. at Lower Witmer Park, in Clearfield. Bells will toll four times in representation of the four planes that crashed.
Stott said following a moment of silence and prayer, there will be a flag presentation, Pledge of Allegiance and National Anthem. She said by having the ceremony at the park, more people can attend and it will have a greater impact.
There were also discussions about having military vehicles on-hand, as well as getting area scouts, local businesses and “anything that represents America” involved.
Following speeches from local dignitaries, such as county commissioners and State Rep. Tommy Sankey, a procession will depart from the park for the courthouse.
There, local police chiefs will lay a memorial wreath in honor of the lives lost. The flag will be saluted and that will be followed by the playing of the Taps.
Stott invited members of the general public to share their ideas and any possible event speakers from local military service members to Ground Zero workers. “This isn’t just for emergency personnel, it’s for the public, as well,” Kling added.
“We want our citizens there. They went through it and have stories [to tell.]” Any ideas should be submitted to council, in the event it should have to tweak any plans before the day of the event.
Stott said council will continue to discuss plans at future meetings, and additional information will be released as it becomes available.