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Students with Bolden Elementary/ Middle school aboard Laurel Bay Community Housing demonstrated their respect in remembrance of the 9/11 attacks on the United States, Sept. 11, 2014. The students retired an American flag and read student-produced poetry that acknowledged the sacrifices made 13 years before.

Photo by Sgt. Marcy Sanchez

Bolden students remember 9/11

12 Sep 2014 | Sgt. Marcy Sanchez

When Bolden Elementary / Middle School teachers engaged their students in conversation regarding Sept. 11th, not many knew the importance of the date or why “we will never forget.”
To the students 9/11 is as much a part of history as World War II or the Civil War but to the teachers who lived through it, it’s far from history.
The students were encouraged to research the date and impact on America. 
In the 2014 presidential proclamation regarding Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance, President Barack Obama outlines the importance of the date.
“On a day that began like so many others, a clear blue sky was pierced by billowing black smoke as a wave of grief crashed over us.  But in one of our darkest moments, we summoned strength and courage, and out of horrible devastation emerged the best of our humanity.  On this solemn anniversary, we pause in remembrance, in reflection, and once again in unity.”
The students viewed images and video of the events of 9/11 which, according to Kathy Holley, the gifted education teacher at Bolden Elementary / Middle School, impacted them and helped them understand the importance of remembering 9/11. 
“If we forget about it then we don’t grow from it,” said Tre Greeson, an 8th-grade student and son of Chief Warrant Officer William Greeson, officer in charge of combat camera, Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island. “Remembering [9/11] is motivation to keep defending our country and not let something like this happen again.”
“I feel as if we forget then it seems as if we don’t care about what happened and the people that died,” said Katlyn Warring, an 8th-grade student and daughter of Sgt. James Willett, senior drill instructor at MCRD Parris Island. “If we forget then we might let our guard down, and it might happen again.”
Along with researching the importance of the date, students were asked to also write poetry concerning the impact the events of 9/11 had on them after knowing more about the date.
“I wanted to write my poem a little different, so my dad and I came up with writing about the Twin Towers as if they had feelings,” said Tyler Kidd, a 7th-grade student and son of Gunnery Sgt. Joseph Kidd, Combat Logistics Company 23, Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort.
Below is an excerpt from Tyler’s poem:

I am gone but never forgotten
I wonder if my twin feels my pain…
I feel unstable and begin to sway
I touch the heavens and begin to pray
I worry that we can no longer stand
I cry as we cannot protect the souls when we crumble to the ground
I am gone but never forgotten
Aside from poems and research, student also participated in a school-wide remembrance the morning of Sept. 11, 2014 where poetry was read, an American flag was retired and a moment of silence was observed.
The event was especially important to the older students who wrote the poetry since they focused countless hours on research about the date.
“If teachers can introduce [9/11] or have students do an activity on it and say why it makes them sad then they’ll at least know [about 9/11],” said Tre. “It’s part of our history, that’s a sign that we’re forgetting what happened.”
“It equates to , when we think of all the people that lost their lives, it truly equates to a war,” said Holley. “It would be very sad for those family members to think that all those people who lost their lives that day would not be remembered, they were innocent bystanders.”
Bolden Elementary / Middle School students started Sept. 11, 2014 with a better understanding of not only the date but the meaning of the date and the effects it has had on all Americans. 
“It was emotionally, historically and physically an impact on America,” said Tre.