About 200 people gathered on Arsenal Island Tuesday morning to mark the 17th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks. At the 9/11 memorial, they honored the nearly 3,000 who died in New York, Washington DC, and near Shanksville Pennsylvania.
Guest speaker, retired Lieutenant General Raymond Mason, says a lot has changed since then, but not "the strength of the American people."
"Those terrorists thought they could break our spirit. But their vile acts had the oppposite effect - our spirit, our love of country is strengthened."
Behind him at the Arsenal's 9/11 memorial, 2,977 flags had been placed - one for each person who died that day - police, firefighters, soldiers, and civilians.
"We should dedicate ourselves in their memory and the things that they did for this great nation of ours, and live each day of our lives the best we can for each other, for our fellow citizens, and for this wonderful world we're blessed to live in."
That day was the beginning of a war that's lasted 17 years, our longest ever. And Mason says it's important to remember that since 9/11, despite knowing the risks, thousands of young people have volunteered each year to serve in the armed forces.