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First sergeants honor 9/11, lead march

  • Published
  • By Tech. Sgt. Chelsea E. FitzPatrick
  • 127th Wing

SELFRIDGE AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Mich.-- Members of the 127th Wing’s First Sergeants Council organized a ruck march and walking event in observance of the 21st anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The approximately four-mile event took place here on Sept. 11, 2022, during the drill weekend.

“Twenty-one years ago, today, this very hour, our nation was under attack,” said Chief Master Sgt. Rick Gordon, 127th Wing command chief, addressing the group before the march began. “What you’re doing today is not for you, it’s to honor the nearly 3,000 people that were killed on this day.”

The march began after a moment of silence at 8:47 a.m., the time the first hijacked plane hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York. This deliberate crash kicked off the chain of events that in total, is the deadliest terrorism attack perpetrated on American soil.

What you’re doing today is not for you, it’s to honor the nearly 3,000 people that were killed on this day.Chief Master Sgt. Rick Gordon

Sr. Master Sgt. Matthew Brewer, a first sergeant who helped organize the event, asked the group who hadn’t yet been born when the attacks took place; approximately five Airmen raised their hands.

“This is why we are doing this,” Brewer said. “We all have our stories of where we were on 9/11 and how it’s shaped our lives. We want to continue reminding people of what happened that day and why we are doing what we are doing here.”

After kicking off the march, the group stopped to observe and discuss each of the attacks that occurred after the North Tower was hit, including the attack on the South Tower, the Pentagon and the crash of Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Members carried guidons, unit pennants, and one large American flag listing the names of casualties of the attacks.

“The most important thing to remember is all those people who died on 9/11,” Brewer said. “All their names are on this flag, including our brothers and sisters in arms, police and firefighters: all the American people who died that day.”