Dixie State commemorates 9/11 fallen

Sept. 11, 2001 is a day Americans will never forget. The trauma of the tragedy that occurred 10 years ago will forever be remembered. The memory of that day lives on for all; whether directly affected or not, citizens nationwide join together each year, on what is now known as 9/11, in memory of the new York City Twin Tower attacks, along with the Pentagon attack in Virginia and the plane crash that occurred in Pennsylvania.

Dixie State supported the DOCUTAH film festival as it commemorated the anniversary of 9/11. The tribute was held Sunday at the DSC Eccles Fine Arts Center and was well-regarded with more than eight hours of special acknowledgment.

The ceremony opened with the DSC men’s choir and carried on with three DOCUTAH films throughout the afternoon. Following the first two films, a flag retirement ceremony took place. unfortunately, the event was rained out and moved indoors, but the meaning of the event was still the same as soldiers lined the halls of the Eccles Fine Arts Center in preparation of the flag retirement. College students, DOCUTAH volunteers and families alike joined in a sense of respect for the many servicemen and women operating across seas today.

The buzz about what was happening on Sept. 11, 2001, continues each year on its anniversary. The same questions are continually asked: how do Americans feel about the direction the United States has taken since 9/11? how many Americans were directly affected by the attacks? how many can remember where they were that morning when the attacks began? has America moved toward unity after 9/11?

Dixie State students shared their answers to these questions with a spectrum of responses.

Kelsie Watters, a senior at Snow Canyon High School who is concurrently enrolled in the Success Academy program offered by Dixie State and a hopeful radiology major, remembered where she was the day of the event 10 years ago.

“I was at home, and I remember I woke up, and I came out, and I just knew that something was wrong because of the feeling in my house,” Watters said. “I was in second grade in 2001. I was scared to go to school. my mom had to convince me that they weren’t going to bomb Santa Clara Elementary.”

Watters said her father is currently serving in Baghdad as a Sergeant first Class in the Army National Guard.

“He’s been deployed three times, twice to Iraq,” Watters said. “It is really hard. I know that they are doing good things over there, and obviously I wish he could be home with me, but he’s told me that they got to open a school, a college, and women are allowed to go because they opened it now. So I think that’s really good that girls are able to get an education over there.”

Eric Palmer, a junior communication major from Salinas, Calif., said he spent 36 months in Iraq as a corporal with the Marine Corps.

“My experience was that the media in the United States misrepresents quite a bit,” Palmer said. “I was actually asked that if I would give a negative opinion on the war that I would be given a Babe Ruth bar as payment, so after I heard that I knew the media had no interest in actually saying what was true.”

Taylor Williams, a senior music education major from Syracuse, did not hesitate to communicate his negative feelings about the direction America has taken since the tragedy of 9/11.

“I know how it affects us college students, and that’s been negative,” Williams said. “For instance, I couldn’t go to summer school this last summer because I couldn’t get the funds to be able to do so, which makes and takes more time for me to be able to graduate.”

Williams was not thrilled to get into a discussion about his feelings on the subject matter.

“I have my entire 10 years during this whole time purposely strayed away from political discussions or anything or even voted, even though I could’ve voted in the last two elections, because I don’t want to have to get into political debates,” Williams said. “Truthfully, I don’t hold opinions because of that.”

for many college students, they were so young that the Twin Towers had little meaning of importance.

“At the time I didn’t really know what was going on,” Charity Spencer, a 2011 graduate of DSC having earned her Associate of Science, said. “I was in sixth grade, but I’ve come to understand now exactly what happened and how it affected everyone.”

Spencer continued to explain the confusion she felt that morning when her teacher turned on the television. because she was so young, she was not yet aware of the Twin Towers nor their location.

Palmer mimicked Spencer’s words as he said: “I actually woke up to my mother saying the Twin Towers were falling. I had no idea what the Twin Towers were, no clue, and was just in a zombie-like state watching it unfold before heading off to class.”

DOCUTAH’s opening film was about Whitehorse, the capital city of the Yukon Territory located in Northwest Canada. a said-to-be hijacked 747 made a diverted landing into the remote town. an elementary school close to the airport in Whitehorse was evacuated, and parents frantically fled their homes and jobs to pick up their children from the school. Nobody was certain whether the hijacked flight was related to the tragedies that were occurring at the same time thousands of miles across the Americas in new York City.

DeeAnn Shaw, a senior communication major from Lehi, said her opinions, namely as a mother, changed after watching the film.

“My kids were in elementary school at that time and thinking about if that had happened in my hometown, you know, somebody threatening us for a hijacking experience and having my kids only a little ways away from a hijacked airplane, that totally changes my whole idea,” Shaw said.

Meagan Doty, a freshman theater major from Salt Lake City, said she feels America is more united since the attacks on 9/11.

Dixie State commemorates 9/11 fallen


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