9/11 anniversary resonates differently among generations

9/11 14th anniversary

Sept. 11, of this marked the 14th anniversary of a tragedy that arguably tore the country apart, only to bring it closer than it had been for quite some time.

Many people who are old enough to remember the day in history, recall exactly what they were doing at the time they heard that a plane had struck the Twin Towers in New York.

But what about the children in school who weren’t even alive for the tragedy and are only hearing about it from their elders?

Shelton Intermediate School’s Principal, Kenneth Saranich said he remembers that morning vividly, but his students not so much.

“All of our students here, were not born when the attack happened. For them it’s kind of conceptualizing what my generation experienced with the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Yeah, we learned about it but you don’t get the same impact compared to if you were alive when it happened,“ said Saranich. “I made sure to tell them why we do remember this day in history as well as what we have done as a country since then. Today is about resiliency and what this country has achieved. Although it is a day of mourning, I also made it clear to them that it is a day of being proud to be an American.“

Saranich said some of the school’s social studies classes were assigned to go home and interview someone about their experience on Sept. 11, 14 years ago in order to gain more of an understanding of what transpired.

“These kids have so many resources where they are able to go on the internet and access clips of this tragedy happening anyways so it’s important to have these lessons and conversations with them,” said Saranich. “When you tell them that there was a terrorist attack so close to them as we are in the Metropolitan area, these kids can somewhat relate to that and are like ‘wow’.”

Students were instructed to wear red, white and blue and also took part in a national moment of silence at 8:46 a.m. when the first plane collided with Tower 1.

The children who weren’t quite old enough to process the tragedy merely remember bits or pieces of the day, but people like Vice President of the Huntington volunteer fire department, Chris Del Buono remember it all too well.

“Firefighters across the country are a band of brothers,” said Del Buono.

Between the four fire companies in Shelton, Del Buono said they raised more than $80,000 in relief funds as well as food donations to help serve the safety services on duty at the time.

"It’s left a mark on all of us, regardless if we are paid or volunteers,” said Del Buono. “We held a boot drive that Saturday morning to collect goods to send over to the staging area they had setup at Shea Stadium. We are all a family so we wanted to make sure we were doing what we could without actually being there.”

With an obvious spot in America’s history, Del Buono said the experience has also engraved a spot in many people’s hearts.

“I’m very proud to be an American, I will never forget how my brothers and sisters here at the fire department banded together during a time of sorrow to help others who needed it.”