With a somber ceremony on the lawn of the municipal center Bethel citizens, government officials, clergy and first responders honored the victims of the 9/11 attacks that occurred ten years ago on Sunday afternoon.
At 5 p.m., Bethel High's NJROTC cadets led a procession of Bethel firefighters, police officers, first responders, boy scouts and residents down School Street, under a large American Flag hung from fire truck across the road.
After hearing words from the First Selectman and vocal and bagpipe versions of "Amazing Grace," attendees took part in a full minute of silence to remember those who lost or risked their lives a decade ago.
Several town religious leaders then offered a variety of prayers:
- Father Corey Piccinino of St. Mary Catholic Church prayed for those killed in acts of violence;
- Cantor Penny Kessler of the Jewish Community Center prayed for protection;
- Jim Bray of Walnut Community Church prayed for healing of those involved of 9/11's aftermath;
- Jane Ellingwood, parish associate of the First Congregational Church of Bethel prayed for the reconciliation among faiths and cultures;
- and the Rev. Vicky Fleming of Bethel United Methodist Church prayed for living into the future.
The ceremony concluded with everyone singing "My Country, 'Tis of Tee" and "God Bless America" and a closing siren salute to the service men and women.
For highlights from the speeches and music, click on the video above.