9/11 Marks Critical Moment In U.S. History

MOON TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — On that crystal clear morning nearly 10 years ago, all of us learned some hard lessons.

Those lessons of Sept. 11th, 2001 are now critical teaching moments in our schools and most of the kids studying them have grown up in a world with a “new normal.”

The 10th-grade students in Mr. Ferri’s AP U.S. History Class at Moon Area High School were in kindergarten when planes fell out of the sky, the Pentagon shook and the Twin Towers toppled.

Ashley Braxton recalls being told of a plane crashing.

“And I knew that my dad worked at the airport for security and freaking out and not knowing if my dad was dead or not,” she said.

There was confusion for Abigail Eberts.

“And I thought it was a weather drill and then my mom came to pick me up and she didn’t really want me to know what was going on, but I could tell she was scared,” she recalled.

These kids remember the panic – the silence – that their parents came home in the middle of the day, that the American Flag appeared everywhere and since then how some civil liberties were eroded for safety sake.

“And I think that people tend to stereotype the people that made that kind of attack,” Justin Frankeny said.

Mia Catsleveter’s dad was in the military, “And I definitely believe it made an impact because there’s a lot more soldiers losing their lives.”

“Iit’s difficult when you’re still in the shadows of 9/11 to see how it’s going to be portrayed long term,” Jason Ferri said.

What happened on 9/11 already fills a fair number of pages in history text books.

“It’s shaken up our politics, our economy, military where we didn’t have a lot of military spending in the 90’s and then obviously that radically changed,” Ferri said.

Students in Moon will have a tangible piece of 9/11 history – a steel beam recovered from the North Tower of the Trade Center courtesy of New York’s Port Authority.

Former Moon Township Fire Chief Charlie Belgie was the driving force behind it.

“When there was a notice that came out that we were going to be able to get it if we agreed to display it as a memorial I jumped on it,” he said.

There will be an unveiling and dedication of the 9/11 Memorial near the municipal building at 10 a.m. Sunday. All are invited.  

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