On September 11th, 2001, the United States witnessed and experienced a national tragedy. Nearly three thousand individuals lost their lives after Al Qaeda engineered a terrorist attack. It is nineteen years later, and American citizens continue to feel grief and sorrow. Typically, remembrance ceremonies are a crucial part to honoring the lives of those that passed away. However, this year, due to the coronavirus epidemic, long held traditions have been replaced.

          Debates over coronavirus safety precautions have resulted in numerous remembrance ceremonies across New York city. On September 11th, memorials were held at the memorial plaza at the former World Trade Center, with another one occurring at a nearby corner. Viewing and observance was so restricted that family members of victims were unable to attend.

          It was initially planned that both Vice President Pence and Democratic challenger Joe Biden would visit the memorial site of the World Trade Center albeit at different times to pay their respects. However, in a rare occurrence, Pence and Biden met up, briefly having a conversation, and exchanging an elbow bump. This act of friendship demonstrates that ultimately Americans will band together in the face of hardship and adversity despite political differences.

          September 11th serves as a time for reflection about those whose lives were lost. Anthoula Katsimatides, who lost her brother in the attack and now serves on the board of the National September 11th Memorial and Museum said in a statement that “I know that the heart of America beats on 9/11 and, of course, thinks about the tragic day. I don’t think that people forget.”

          It is clear that the incidents which occurred on September 11th have caused lasting scars in the US population, and even internationally. The tragic events led to an entire overhaul of the transportation security administration and led the United States to enter into number conflicts and wars in the middle east. It is unlikely that the events of September 11th will be forgotten soon, but some have suggested that perhaps 9/11 should be viewed as a call to action.

          There has been an increase in the amount of people advocating for volunteer efforts in the wake of September 11th. In 2001, New York City had to unite in order to help save people and restore a semblance of normalcy to the city. There is now a call for individuals to spend their days volunteering in honor of those who lost their lives trying to help others.