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Mason City to commemorate events of September 11, 2001

MASON CITY — Mason City will commemorate “the time that changed everything” during a ceremony at 8:59 a.m. Saturday in Central Park.

The ceremony will begin at the exact time the first of two world trade centers collapsed twenty years ago on Saturday. The 9-11 attack was one of the deadliest foreign assaults ever on U.S. soil.

“It is important to remember because it really was a time that changed everything,” said retired Navy Capt. Joan Platz, of Mason City. “As a nation, we suddenly felt less invincible.”

Platz, joined with Dalena Barz and Alice Hanley of Alpha Media to coordinate the Mason City 20th Anniversary 9-11 Commemoration.

The ceremony will include the joint Mason City Police & Fire Department Honor Guard, 800 flags displayed throughout the park, and bell ringing by area churches.

“It’s important to reflect on the courage of our first responders, who knowing how dangerous it can be, still volunteer. It is a good time for us to thank our Mason City first responders,” said Platz, who noted first responders will be providing an honor guard for the ceremony.

“It is important to remember what happed that day and it’s personal to me because I was in the Pentagon at the time,” she said. “I was standing at my desk working when we got the call that a plane had hit a tower in New York. I worked in Naval aviation so the caller wanted to know if the Navy was missing a plane. Then we watched the second attack and shortly thereafter we felt the third attack.”

“It is also time to take the courage of the members of Flight 93 and to do what they asked us to do. ‘Let’s roll’ and let’s make America a better place,” she said.

The community is invited to join in the commemoration which will last about thirty minutes. The commemoration will be emceed by Tim Fleming, of Alpha Media, which will also stream the event live on Facebook.

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