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Bradford Heights students participate in a Patriots Day ceremony

From Daily Local News by Ginger Rae Dunbar

WEST BRADFORD — Americans commemorated 9/11 with solemn ceremonies nationwide on Wednesday to never forget the deadliest terror attack on American soil 18 years ago.

Bradford Heights Elementary School students participated in a flag raising ceremony on Wednesday to remember the nearly 3,000 lives lost in the terrorist attacks when hijacked planes slammed into the trade center, the Pentagon and a field near Shanksville, Pa. on Sept. 11, 2001. The students and staff were joined by several local first-responders from the West Bradford Fire Company and the Pennsylvania State Police.

“We gather this morning, on Patriots Day, to remember the countless military servicemen and women and first responders who have dedicated their lives in service to our nation,” Bradford Heights Principal Andrew Hoffert said.

He told the kindergarten through fifth-grade students that as a sign of respect, all U.S. flags are ordered to be flown at half-staff that day. The Bradford Heights flag ceremony is held outdoors with students surrounding the flag pole.

Bradford Heights students, who are members of the local Cub Scout Packs and Girl Scouts, participated in the ceremony. Benjamin Plichta, a fifth-grade student with Cub Scout Pack 215, served as the Master of Ceremonies and Olivia Moeller, a third-grade student with Troop No. 4021, served as the Flag Bearer. They were assisted by: fifth-grade student Zach Teich; fourth-grade student Jude Rohner; Downingtown Girl Scout Service Unit 602 in the Color Guard: fifth-grade student Karly Swanson with Troop No. 4057 and fourth-grade student Brynn Laverty with Troop No. 4127.

Lionville Middle School students, also of the Downingtown Area School District, observed a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., the moment a hijacked plane slammed into the World Trade Center's North Tower on Sept. 11, 2001. Lionville Principal Jonathan Ross said the students and staff paused to “pay tribute and remember the lives of the brave and innocent Americans lost 18 years ago today.”