Local leaders, citizens prepare for 9/11 commemoration

September 10, 2011

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 8 a.m. Sept. 10, 2011

Issaquah residents prepared to mark 10 years since the 9/11 attacks Saturday, as local leaders utilized the anniversary to remind citizens to prepare for disasters and remain vigilant against threats.

The city, Eastside Fire & Rescue and community organizations plan to host a ceremony to commemorate the anniversary at 1 p.m. Sunday. The remembrance is scheduled to occur on the lawn at the Issaquah Community Center, 301 Rainier Blvd. S.

Issaquah Mayor Ava Frisinger is scheduled to speak at the event. The keynote speaker is Bill Lokey, a firefighter sent to New York City after 9/11 as part a special emergency services task force.

The anniversary also offered a chance for local leaders to cast a spotlight on emergency preparedness efforts.

King County Executive Dow Constantine said regional leaders acted in the decade since 9/11 to prepare for disasters.

“Over the past 10 years, in concert with our regional partners, we have worked to build a whole-community approach to disaster planning, response and recovery,” he said in a statement. “This includes collaborative regional disaster plans and joint communication strategies that we constantly test and improve.”

Constantine is scheduled to join Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn at Seattle Center’s Mural Amphitheatre at 9:30 a.m. Sunday to mark the anniversary.

Gov. Chris Gregoire said the attacks’ anniversary offered a reminder to serve local communities, and also to remain vigilant against possible terrorist threats.

“This weekend — as we remember the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks — I ask all Washingtonians to remember that feeling of responsibility we had 10 years ago when we wondered what we could do to help each other,” Gregoire said in a statement. “I urge Washingtonians to again take a strong interest in your neighbors who may need your help or special assistance. I ask you to continue to be involved in our local communities and give back to local organizations. And while we know threats still exist, I’ll repeat the advice given from our federal partners: if you see something, say something.”

U.S. Sen. Patty Murray invoked the sense of unity many Americans felt in the days after the attacks.

“Ten years ago terrorists attacked our country, our financial center, our military headquarters and our sense of security. The shocking pictures from that day are still fixed in our minds. Our collective history was changed and none of us will ever be the same,” she said in a statement. “On that day, no matter our differences, where we came from in life, the region of the country, our race, religion or political party — we were all one thing: Americans.”

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