McAlester News-Capital

McAlester News-Capital office

Our nation and our community will reflect today on the day the world stood still 20 years ago.

The McAlester News-Capital print edition from Sept. 11, 2001 ago shows a fire blasting from one of the Twin Towers and "ATTACK" emblazoned atop the front page.

News-Capital reporters covered local response in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.

Pittsburg County officials reviewed Emergency Operations Plans. Local Red Cross volunteers were placed on alert. City officials reflected on their trip to Washington, DC at the time of the attacks. Some local sporting events halted. Students collected donations for those impacted in New York.

McAlester Regional Health Center Foundation Director Chris Plunkett reflected on the years since the attack and how it inspired him to return to military service. He told us about retiring from the Army earlier that year and rejoining the military through the Air Force following the 9/11 attacks.

“I knew then, ‘I want to go back in,’” the 1993 McAlester High School graduate told us.

He went to serve in the first wave that led to U.S. forces securing Baghdad Airport on April 3, 2003 behind Maj. Gen. Buford Blount’s U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Division.

We all remember the day of the attacks — where we were, who we saw, how we felt.

We all remember the following days, weeks and months as we all united in healing after the deadliest attack on our soil since Pearl Harbor.

Let's all take a moment today to reflect on 9/11 — because we can't forget the horrific scenes from the planes hitting the towers, to the Pentagon on fire, to The Falling Man.

But let's reflect on how our nation — our community — united in response to the attack. We talked to each other about the attacks, we collected donations to support those in need, we offered each other solace.

We should strive for that same unity every day.

And we can't ever forget.

• McAlester News-Capital Editorial Board

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