2016 911 Mayor's Speech of Remembrance

On September 11th, 2016 I awoke and checked my cell phone around 8:30. 
There was a message from the Mayor of Mt. Airy at 2:02 a.m. asking me to write him a speech for the 911 ceremony. I went to work on it immediately (duty, honor, country). 
In half an hour, partially due to having done the same several years in the past for this cermony, I was able to create the following speech for him to give.

Mayor Patrick Rockinberg
911 Memorial Speech
September 11th, 2016

Good afternoon Mount Airy friends and neighbors:
I am proud to be joined by Councilman [Names Here]
As St. John says so beautifully in the biblical verse John 15: “Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
We are here today to honor that Christ-like sacrifice by the men and women who laid down their lives to save us on 911, and the firefighters, police officers and emergency medical technicians who have continued to do so in the 15 years since.
Thank you for joining us today has Mount Airy remembers those lost on September 11th 2001.
Mount Airy residents Commander Volk and Chief Warrant Officer Ruth who gave their lives in the Pentagon assault that day join a long line of military Sons and Daughters who served and lost their lives for their country. Many of the names on the Veteran memorials in front of you are of those who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our freedoms.
We honor Chief Army Warrant Officer (CWO) William Ruth and Navy Lieutenant Commander Ronald J. Vauk for their lives and their sacrifice, especially on 911.
CWO Ruth, Marine Corps Pilot who in Vietnam evacuated the dead and wounded under heavy enemy fire went on to earn a Master’s degree when he returned from the war.
He taught social studies and history for 30 years to middle school students in Montgomery County and was pulled from the classroom In the best tradition of the citizen soldier to fight in Desert Shield and Desert Storm. He presided one time as Commander Of the Mt. Airy American Legion before God called him home, Lt. Vauk graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy, served on the submarines U.S.S. Lipscomb And U.S.S. Oklahoma City, was a supervisor in submarine technology at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, and was the Watch Commander at the Pentagon Command Center on the phone trying to get jets to scramble when the Jihadi-hijacked plane hit the Pentagon like a cruise missile,
Both served to the last minute after a life of non-stop service.
So, too, with our fire fighters, police officers, and emergency medical technicians. During the 911 assault, and in the 15 years since, when everyone else runs from the death and destruction, they run into it to save lives.
They are truly Christ-like in their courage, strength, humility, grace, tenderness, and grit countering daily the horrors that radical Islamic terrorists unfortunately visit on Americans and so many others each day.
These brave men and women are the tip of the spear. When terrorists strike, we count on them to defend and protect us. And the amazing thing is, they do each and every time. Think about that for a minute.
So we pray for and give thank all our military, law enforcement and emergency responder's who put their lives on the line every day for our safety and freedoms.
We had a physical and spiritual life before 911 and we have a New Life now because Christ never told us it would be easy.
So, please, let us celebrate our New Life together.

God bless you...God bless Mount Airy...and God bless America

Like so many small town events that are the backbone of this nation, this event was organized the the following little noticed, but critically important, patriotic organizations and individual patriots. Below is the full program of that day.

911 Patriot Day Ceremony at Pin Grove Chapel Program

Announce the display of the Chapel Flag at half staff in honor of the day.
Command, "POST THE COLORS" - Harry Wolfe
Post the Flag at Half Staff - Wolfe, Clemente and selected Boy Scouts.
Vocal rendering of the Star Spangled Banner - by Vance Hunt
Call for the Pledge of Allegiance - Harry Wolfe
Opening Prayer by Al Yeater, Chaplain of VFW Post 10076
Welcome - Joe Clemente, Master of Ceremonies
Acknowledge Participants:
Lcpl Deane Detachment, Marine Corps League
Young Marines, Carroll County Unit
American Legion Post,191
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10076
Boy Scouts Troop #460
Cub Scouts Troop #460
Boy Scouts Troop #1191
Cub Scouts Troop #1191
Mount Airy Volunteer Fire Company
Maryland State Police, Mount Airy Detachment

Introduce Speakers:
Mayor Patrick Rockinberg
Recognize any members of the Town Cuncil
Mount Airy Police Chief Doug Reitz
Landon Becker, Caommander VFW
Ann Wilson, Commander American Legion
Chris Deboy, Jennifer Vauk's brother-in-law that worked with LCMDR Ronald L. Vauk
Battalion Chief gary Hubble B Shift - Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport
Deput Fire Chief Scott LeGore - Washington Dulles International Airport
Both were Firefighters/Paramedics at National Airport on 9/11/2001

At this time, two wreaths in honor of the two local service members who perished at the Pentagon 15 years ago will be presented, while the playing of Amazing Grace by Dale Gardner a retired Battalion Chief from the Howard County Department of Fire & Rescue Services. He is a piper wit the Fire Brigade Pipes & Drums of Greater Baltimore.

The first wreath in honor of LCMDG Ronald L. Vauk will be placed by Ann Wilson, American Legion Commander and State Trooper Jonathan Horner, MSP
The second wreath in honor of CWO Willliam Ruth will be placed by Landon Becker, VFW Commander and ana member of the Mt. Airy Volunteer Fire Company.
Benediction by VFW Chaplain Al Yeater
Honor Volley, LCpl Deane Detachment Fire Party of the Marine Corps League
Taps by Lucas Spiros, a member of the VFW of Mt. Airy, Post 10076

This concludes the ceremony
Thank you for your attendance

 Note: When so many other Americans have moved on and no longer remember the sacrifices made that day for our freedom, I pray we never forget. This Mount Airy 911 Patriot’s Day Ceremony at Pine Grove Chapel is one outstanding way we meet that goal.

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