It was a time to remember the nearly 3,000 people who died on the somber morning of September 11, 2001.
Eighteen years have passed since the day terrorists commandeered airplanes and the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City came down.
Paying tribute to those who lost their lives, the South Pasadena police and fire departments hosted a brief ceremony at South Pasadena City Hall on Wednesday morning to commemorate the single deadliest terrorist attack in history.
South Pasadena Police Chief Joe Ortiz welcomed the small gathering, including Mayor Dr. Marina Khubesrian and council members Robert Joe and Diana Mahmud.
Among those who perished, pointed out Ortiz, were 343 firefighters and 60 police officers.
The three attack sites were at the World Trade Center in New York City – north and south towers – the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. and Stonycreek Township near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
Since that fatal day, Ortiz said, an additional 202 firefighters and members of the NYPD have died from 9/11 illnesses.
“As you go throughout your day, I just ask that you always keep this in mind, that we as a nation will never forget 9/11,” he said.
As part of the ceremony, officers lowered the American flag in front of City Hall to half-mast following the police chief’s remarks.
The ceremony was held in coordination with police and fire departments throughout the San Gabriel Valley through the Verdugo Fire Communications Center.
Important 9/11 Timeline
8:46:40 Eastern Time: Flight 11 crashes into the north face of the North Tower (1 WTC) of the World Trade Center, between floors 93 and 99. The aircraft enters the tower intact.
9:03:00 Eastern Time: Flight 175 crashes into the south face of the South Tower (2 WTC) of the World Trade Center, between floors 77 and 85. Parts of the plane, including the starboard engine, leave the building from its east and north sides, falling to the ground six blocks away.
9:37:46 Eastern Time: Flight 77 crashes into the western side of The Pentagon and starts a violent fire.
10:03:11 Eastern Time: Flight 93 is crashed by its hijackers as a result of fighting in the cockpit 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. Later reports indicate that passengers had learned about the World Trade Center and Pentagon crashes and were resisting the hijackers. The 9/11 Commission believed that Flight 93’s target was either the United States Capitol building or the White House in Washington, D.C.