Hundreds gather to honor 9/11 victims and first responders in Bakersfield

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BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — 9/11 is a day where communities across the country come together to pay respect to those who lost their lives 20 years ago. But it’s also a day to educate, heal and appreciate the first responders who risk their lives for us every day.

Hundreds pay their respect to the fallen heroes in 9/11 at the 20th anniversary 9/11 memorial in Bakersfield.

Flags, music and a fly over by air force jets highlighted the event.

Some who attended the event knew people who lost their lives during the bombing.

“I went to high school in Ridgewood New Jersey and one of my classmates, Charles Murphey, he worked for Canner Fitz Gerald, and he passed away,” Jeff Thielscher a 9/11 memorial attendee said. “I knew a firefighter too, Michael Carrol, who passed away in tower two. It hits me hard because I knew those two people personally.”

Youth also paid their respects as volunteers, JROTC members, and by placing flowers along with hundreds of others gathered at the memorial in memory of those who died.

“We all know where we were on 9/11 and our parents know where they were when JFK was assassinated and unfortunately tragic events like those often bring the country together,” Vince Maiocco a 9/11 Memorial Volunteer said.

Some speakers addressed the community. Others addressed the nation.

“When Americans lend a hand to one another nothing is impossible,” Aaron Duncan a fire chief at Kern County Fire Department said. “We are not about what happened on September 11th. We are happened on September 12th.”

As Aaron Duncan said, the community looks towards the future but still remembers the lessons from the past.

“Well I think we should never forget what happened on 9/11 and what the Taliban did to us,” Thielscher said. “The men that died that day, the citizens that died that day, the very heroic firefighters and policemen that saved people in the towers, you can’t just forget them.”

If you missed the memorial you can attend the next one at 7 p.m. at Fire Station 15.

The memorial itself is open to the public.

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