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County Plans 9/11 10-Year Anniversary Ceremony

Tree will be planted Sunday morning in memory of 39 Somerset residents who died in attacks.

Charles B. McKenna, director of the New Jersey State Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, is scheduled to represent Gov. Chris Christie at Somerset County’s 9/11 memorial ceremony. He will bring a proclamation from the governor.

The ceremony will begin Sunday at 8:46 a.m., next to the county’s 9/11 memorial at the corner of Main and Bridge streets in Somerville.  The Bernie Field parking deck off East High Street will be open for free parking for the ceremony.

Members of the Somerset County Board of Freeholders, led by Freeholder Director Robert Zaborowski, will plant a tree in memory of the 39 county residents killed in the 9/11 terror attacks 10 years ago.

“The tree, with its symbolism of hope and renewal, will be a lasting tribute to the wives, husbands, sons, daughters, parents and siblings who perished on Sept. 11,” Zaborowski said. “We invite the families and friends of these 39 residents to attend along with anyone from the public who would like to honor their memory.”

The ceremony also will include the traditional wreath-laying at the memorial. The presentation of colors will be made by the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard; music will be provided by the Somerset County Police Pipes & Drums. 

State Sen. Christopher “Kip” Bateman, Assemblyman Peter J. Biondi and Assemblywoman Denise Coyle will attend. Somerville Mayor Brian Gallagher and members of the Somerville Police Department, Somerville Fire Department and Somerville Rescue Squad also will be in attendance.

The ceremony will begin at 8:46 a.m., signifying the time the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center. The ceremony will begin with a brief tolling of the bell at the top of the nearby historic courthouse. Following the tree-planting and wreath placement, the freeholders will read the names of the 39 Somerset County residents killed at the World Trade Center. After a moment of silence, the Police Pipes & Drums will play “Amazing Grace” and the Honor Guard will retire the colors.

The freeholders also are encouraging county residents to participate in the national Moment of Remembrance on Sept. 11 at 1 p.m. The courthouse bell will toll at 1 p.m. as part of this observance.

Flags at county facilities will be flown at half-staff in accordance with the congressional mandate passed in December 2001.

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