Yesterday Saddleback College hosted a 9/11 commemoration ceremony at the college’s veterans memorial to pay tribute to the victims of September 11, 2001 and those who died in subsequent action. Approximately 200 students, faculty, staff, administrators, and community members were in attendance.
James Pyle, Saddleback’s Deputy Chief of Police, led the event and introduced speakers Terry Scort, Battalion Chief of the Orange County Fire Authority, and Dustin Ardolf, United States Marine Corps veteran and a student at Saddleback College. Erin Long, Senior Administrative Assistant for student development, sang the national anthem.
Dr. Tod A. Burnett, President of Saddleback College, stated, “Yesterday was a time to reflect on the services provided by our first responders at Saddleback College and throughout our community. Thank you for your commitment and sacrificing your safety to ensure ours is upheld.”
Speaking of his years of service, Ardolf stated, “I remember those who sacrificed everything for our freedom. I’ve seen death but live life. I challenge you to not take life for granted. Rise and respect the nation’s colors and never forget.”
For Chief Scort, the day will always be one that can’t be erased from memory, he stated, “We can all remember what we were doing, where we were going and what we planned to do that day. We can all remember when our hearts broke that day. Twelve years later we are a stronger nation, a safer world and people more united as ever before.”
Chief Scort also posed a challenge to the audience, asking listeners to “go forward and spread the word to not forget September 11th as we move forward in another year.”
To pay tribute to those who lost their lives during the 9/11 terrorist attacks and subsequent action, Orange County Sheriff’s Deputies Bruce Frazee and Randy Taylor placed a wreath at the college’s veterans memorial, and Chief Pyle led the crowd in a moment of silence.