Today, citizens across the U.S. are paying tribute to the nearly 3,000 people who lost their lives during a terrorist attack on the nation Sept. 11, 2001.
On that fateful day 17 years ago, 19 men hijacked four U.S. commercial airplanes bound for the west coast.
The first plane, American Airlines Flight 11, hit the World Trade Center’s north tower in New York City at 8:46 a.m.; the second, United Airlines Flight 175, hit the south tower at 9:03 a.m.; the third, American Airlines Flight 77, hit the Pentagon Building in Washington D.C. at 9:37 a.m.; and the fourth, United Airlines Flight 93, crashed in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
The attack, orchestrated by al-Queda leader Osama bin Laden, resulted in a total of 2,977 deaths.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson released a statement early Tuesday afternoon.
“Seventeen years ago, we awoke to the new reality of international terrorism,” he said. “But as Americans always do, we shook off the blow and turned to the task of understanding the threat and learning how to defend the United States against it.”
Hutchinson said on that day, America, “once again,” showed its strength of character.
“Each year on this anniversary, I think of that strength of character and the sacrifice, determination, and courage that were on full display that day and the weeks following the attacks,” he said. “We will never forget that Tuesday morning and will forever remember the ones we lost.”
Of the 2,977 who were killed in the initial attacks and collapse of the towers, 343 were NYC Firefighters, 23 were NYC police officers and 37 were officers at the port authority.
“On this solemn anniversary of 9/11, let us remember the many Americans who lost their lives in the horrific attacks of that day — including a friend who was on American Airlines Flight 77 when it hit the Pentagon — as well as the heroism and bravery displayed by those who put their lives in harm’s way in response to those attacks,” a statement from Lt. Gov. Tim Griffin reads. “Let it also remind us of the strength, unity, and resolve our nation showed on 9/11 and in the difficult days that followed.”
He said as the nation and its allies continue the struggle against terrorism, he thanks those who serve in the armed forced and continue to fight the war on terror.