For anniversaries, big round numbers seem to always catch our attention and carry more meaning than others.
Sure, we have three-year, seven-year and 22-year celebrations. But we really break out the band for the five-year commemorations. Five, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30 and so on.
Tuesday marked 17 years since that horrible day — Sept. 11, 2001 when America was attacked.
Like a bad action-film, planes flew into the Twin Towers in New York City, another into the Pentagon and a third crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
Nearly 3,000 people dead, including more than 400 first responders.
Sept. 11 is Patriot Day, a day set aside to remember those lost and those injured on that fateful day.
Yet this year, ceremonies seemed somewhat subdued in comparison to other years. Maybe it is because we live on the West Coast, in East Coast neighborhoods, particularly in areas where neighbors and loved ones were lost, that day carries more meaning.
We see the effects of those attacks daily.
More security at athletic events. More care taken to screen packages. And of course anyone who flies rues having to go through security.
Those are just remnants from what happened on Sept. 11, 2001.
It is true that as time distances one from tragedy, that event can lose some significance.
It remains upon our nation to Never Forget what happened that dreadful day and to remember that even during these contentious, partisan times that we must find a way to remain united at our core as citizens of this United States of America.
Sam Pachuca, commander of VFW Luneta Post 52 said it best:at Tuesday’s ceremony in Stockton: “To me what’s important is that we, the Stockton VFW and you who are here today have not forgotten. We need to continue, to carry that responsibility, and it is a responsibility. It’s a responsibility to our fellow citizens, a responsibility to our community and a responsibility to our first responders.”