The annual September 11th ceremony held at the Wellesley Fire Department’s headquarters on Route 9 is usually open to anyone who would like to attend. The event typically draws about 75 community members, first responders, and other town employees, who gather to hear the somber toll of the bell and hear the names of town residents who died in the terrorist attacks.
This year the ceremony will still take place, however, it is not open to the public due to COVID concerns. Wellesley Media will be on hand to film the event and will have it available for viewing later in the day (it will not be live streamed).
The 2020 observances in town will include flags flying at half staff to commemorate the 19th anniversary of the 9/11/2001 terrorist attacks which killed 2,977 civilians and first responders in New York City, Washington, D.C., and outside of Shanksville, Penn. It is also likely that, as in years past, a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance, a tolling of the fire bell, and the sounds of Taps, will be a part of the ceremony.
Four Wellesley residents lost their lives on that day: John Cahill, Neilie Casey, Edmund Glazer, and Patrick Quigley.
Fundraiser put on hold for this year
Wellesley resident Patti Quigley, who along with Needham’s Susan Retik, formed Beyond the 11th, a 501(c)(3) organization, after their husbands were killed in the 9/11 attacks. Its main fundraiser, Beyond the Bike, is a 260-mile ride that begins at the memorial pools at the site of Ground Zero in New York City, winds through the rolling hills of Connecticut, and ends in Boston. The 3-day ride typically raises over $150k for the organization, but did not happen this year due to COVID.
The mission of Beyond the 11th, as stated on their website is “to partner with international aid groups to teach vulnerable women the income-generating skills they need to not just survive but thrive. They are living proof that pencils and ledgers – not airstrikes and missiles – are the most powerful agents for change.”