UPDATE: A second 9/11 memorial observance has been added in Huntington Beach at the Pier Plaza (Main Street and Pacific Coast Highway) at 6 p.m.)
By Jim Tortolano
Like many Americans, Don MacAllister can remember his reaction when terrorists attacked the United States on Sept. 11, 2001. The former Huntington Beach mayor, councilman and school board member said his first thought was “This can’t be happening.
“Then it was all over the television,” he recalls. “And then all I could think was ‘who would do this? Who would do something like this to us?’”
The memory of that moment is indelible to millions; this weekend the cities of Garden Grove, Huntington Beach and Westminster will host observances Sunday on the 15th anniversary of the event on what has come to be called Patriots Day.
MacAllister is one of a group of Huntington Beach leaders and residents behind a permanent 9/11 Memorial to be unveiled in the Huntington Beach Civic Center. A key component of the display are two pieces of steel recovered from Ground Zero of the attacks on the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City.
Work on the memorial has taken five years; the original site has to be discarded because it rested upon an old oil well.
Huntington Beach’s dedication of the memorial will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. in the City Hall, located on the lower level just outside the city council chambers, across from the police training center at 2000 Main St.
There will be a flyover by Orange County air support units, a performance of “Amazing Grace” by a pipe and drum group and other patriotic elements including the singing of the National Anthem by students from the Huntington Beach High School Academy of Performing Arts.
In Garden Grove, the principal observance will be at the Festival Amphitheatre on Main Street starting at 7:30 p.m. Entitled “September 11th: We Will Never Forget,” the event will be hosted by John Walcutt, artistic director of Shakespeare Orange County. There will be a special performance by the Orchestre Surreal. Tickets are $20. For more information, go to http://shakespeareoc.org/sept11/ .
In Westminster, the 9/11 observance will be combined with Dia de La Familia in Sigler Park from 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. The specific memorial remarks will be made at 2:45 p.m. The park is located at 7301 Plaza St., south of Westminster Boulevard.
Categories: Across the Area