Embassy Yaounde Pauses to Remember 9/11
On Friday September 9, 2011, over 150 people attended a remembrance ceremony of the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, which honored the lives of the 3000 men and women from over 80 countries worldwide who lost their lives as well as the service and heroism displayed on that tragic day.
Fittingly, the ceremony which brought together a cross section from political, civil society and religious leaders, took place in the courtyard of the Yaounde Embassy compound around the flagpole. The United States Marine Corps, accompanied by music played by Colonel Morgan, placed a wreath in honor of those who died in the tragedy. A moment of silence was observed, after which Colonel Morgan continued to provide a stirring rendition of “Amazing Grace” on the bagpipes as the flag was lowered. The 4th and 5th grade choir of the American School in Yaounde, directed by Lindsay Sumrow, brought tears to the eyes of all present as they sang “We are the World.”
In her remarks, the Chargée d’Affaires, a.i., Lisa Peterson, decried the crimes of the terrorists as she recalled the horror of that day through the reactions of nations worldwide but also called on all present to use this day as an opportunity to renew their resolve for service and global peace and unity and to continue to uphold the American values of liberty and equality that have made —and still make—the United States of America.
“At this solemn moment, we pause to remember this day and the death and devastation it brought to the world. We pause to honor the police officers, fire fighters, and citizens whose acts of heroism confronted the ideology of hate and inspired a new wave of hope. And we pause to say thank you to the communities around the world, whose outpouring of sympathy and solidarity brought a bruised nation back to its feet as President Obama once stated, “What makes the United States of America so special is precisely the fact that we are willing to uphold our values and our ideals not just when it’s easy, but when it’s hard…”
After the conclusion of the official ceremony, the guests viewed a photo exhibit of the events of 9/11 which drew many comments and reactions. The event received extensive media coverage.