September 11, 2017 – Legislator Leslie Kennedy joined hundreds of members of the Commack community at Commack High School to commemorate those killed sixteen years ago in the 9/11 attacks. At 8:46 a.m., the first of four hijacked airplanes was flown into the North Tower of the World Trade Center complex in New York City. Over the course of the next hour and a half, two of the remaining three passenger airplanes hit their targets, the South Tower and the Pentagon respectively, with a fourth deliberately crashed in Pennsylvania as passengers fought to retake control from the hijackers. Nearly three thousand people were killed in the attack, and thousands more (most of them first responders such as firemen and policemen) suffered and continue to suffer from debilitating injuries from debris, dust and contaminants released in the subsequent collapse of three of the World Trade Center towers.
In a somber ceremony on the Heroes Memorial Track, Legislator Kennedy, state and local officials (including New York State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan), surviving first responders, members of the Marine Corps and Commack citizens all looked on silently as the memorial bell was rung, once for each of the passenger airplanes crashed sixteen years ago. Previously, bagpipers from the United States Marine Corps and Rabbi Mendel Teldon of the Chabad of Commack had opened the ceremony, with the latter offering a prayer for those killed sixteen years ago and those still affected today. Speakers included Commack High School superintendent Dr. Donald James, Commack Board of Education President Steven Hartman and John Feal of the Feal Good Foundation, a nonprofit that fights for treatment and compensation on behalf of surviving victims and first responders. Commack citizens who were lost in the attack and their families were honored with wreaths in front of an illuminated representation of the twin towers, while other attendees walked the track and left daisies in remembrance of those who were lost. “The world changed for everyone on this day, sixteen years ago,” Legislator Kennedy remarked, “but for those of us who lost friends family and loved ones, the world ended. For many of them, there is no moving on, at least not entirely. Today, many of us here are too young to remember what ended and what was lost on that fateful day. But as friends, family, loved ones, and fellow countrymen, we have a duty to remember those who were lost and to support and protect those they have left behind. May we never, ever stop doing that.”
If you were a responder during the 9-11 attacks, a victim of the attacks or suffer health effects stemming from exposure to those attacks, you may be entitled to compensation and support. The Fealgood foundation works to help these people and represent them in the fight for compensation. They can be reached by phone at (631) 724-3320, or can be reached on their website at http://fealgoodfoundation.com/.
For more information about this event or other events in the community, please call our office at (631)-854-3735 or log onto Legislator Kennedy’s Facebook page at facebook.com/legislatorlesliekennedy.
Suffolk County Legislator Leslie Kennedy represents the 12th Legislative District, encompassing Smithtown, Nesconset, Hauppauge, the Village of the Branch, Lake Grove, parts of Commack, Ronkonkoma, Lake Ronkonkoma and Centereach. Legislator Kennedy was born and raised on Long Island, is a former nurse and small business manager, and has dedicated her life towards the betterment of our community. She currently serves on the following Committees: Budget and Finance, Education and Human Services, Government Operations, Personnel, and Information Technology, Health, Parks & Recreation, Public Safety, and Veterans