ELLSWORTH — The Ellsworth fire and police departments and other local rescue workers held a ceremony Friday at City Hall to remember the loss the United States incurred from the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
Several spoke, including Deputy Fire Chief Richard Tupper, who led the ceremony and interspersed a timeline of that day unfolding in between speakers.
Ellsworth Police Sgt. Kelvin Mote, who is also a staff sergeant for the U.S. Army Reserves, spoke about “extraordinary heroes.”
Mote read some of the last words of Todd Beamer, a husband and father of three who led the effort to overpower hijackers on Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.
“‘We’re going to rush the hijackers,’” Mote said.
“When the time came, he made a decision and because of that, Flight 93 crashed into a field instead of another building,” Mote said.
Mote also spoke of Madeline Amy Sweeney, a wife and mother of two young children, who was a flight attendant on board American Airlines Flight 11 when it was flown into the north tower at the World Trade Center.
Before the plane crashed, Sweeney called her husband then called flight control and gave them the names of the hijackers and their seat assignments, Mote said.
“Let’s not forget those people who didn’t have to do anything but gave the ultimate sacrifice and gave everything,” Mote said.
State Rep. Brian Langley (R-Ellsworth) spoke about his memories of that day.
“It was a Tuesday,” Langley said. He had been teaching at Hancock County Technical Center and heard about the first tower when he stepped into his office to grab a book.
Langley said his first thought was that the crash was an accident. Then he heard about the second tower and knew that the United States was under attack.
“I remember trying to decide whether to open the Lobster Pot,” he said.
Langley said he did open, thinking it best to stick to a routine as well as realizing that visitors here still needed a place to eat.
“Every customer was subdued, like they’d been gut-punched,” he said. Conversations were held in whispers. Customers who didn’t know each other were talking across tables, he said.
“We were all Americans that day and we were all united,” said Langley.
“Each of you has a memory of your own,” he said. “We can never forget as a nation those who rushed into a building to save lives knowing full well they could lose theirs.”
Lt. Kevin Bland, who is a lieutenant in the Bangor Fire Department and a volunteer lieutenant for Ellsworth, spoke about the loss the families of firefighters are living with today.
“All that’s left are the memories,” Bland said. “Let’s remember the 343 families. God bless you and God bless America.”
After the ringing of church bells to symbolize the last call for the emergency personnel, Pastor Scott Conners led the 50 to 60 residents and City Hall employees in a prayer.
Deputy Chief Tupper said in closing, “May we never forget the loss of our brothers, sisters, family and friends.”