CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Alice remembers 9/11 terrorist attacks

Melissa Cantu Trevino
Alice Echo News Journal

The 20th anniversary of 9/11 had local first responders and healthcare workers remembering what happened that tragic day as nearly 3,000 people died due to terrorist attacks.

On Friday morning, members of the Alice community, including local first responders, gathered at CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Alice for a special event in commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks.

On Sept. 11, 2001, 19 militants associated with the Islamic extremist group al Qaeda hijacked four airplanes and carried out suicide attacks against targets in the United States. Two of the planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, a third plane hit the Pentagon just outside Washington, D.C., and the fourth plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, according to History.com.

First responder, community leaders and health care workers honor the people lost in the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Alice Fire Chief Patrick Thomas recalled the moment and story in his life when the attacks unfolded. He asked everyone not only to remember the firefighters lost, but to remember everyone and all their families.

"9/11 had a big impact on my career. I was at the beginning of my career. That day I was had been with the fire department for a few months. I was still new," Thomas said. "As firefighters a big portion of what we do is prepare for ourselves for the moment we are called to do our job. I know it's something that we do...It is a heroic act , but it's our job and something we prepare everyday."

That day he watched New York firefighters do their job without hesitation, without fear of what may happen to them as they rushed into the World Trade Centers to save lives.

20th memorial anniversary of 9/11 at the CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Alice

After the attacks he thought long and hard about how he would honor the 343 firefighters who lost their lives. He came to the conclusion that to honor them meant that he needed to "to give everything" to his career.

Alice Mayor Cynthia Carrasco, CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Alice President Rick Morin, and other leaders made remarks in honor of the first responders who made the ultimate sacrifice on that day.

We honor all of our first responders and all of our health care workers," Carrasco said before attendees took a walk and held three different moments of silence. Attendees walked at least 20 steps in honor of each first responder who lost his or her life on 9/11.