By Staff Sgt. Noshoba Davis, Louisiana National Guard Public Affairs
PINEVILLE, La. – Soldiers, cadre and recruits with the Louisiana National Guard’s Detachment 7, B Company, 18th Recruiting and Retention Battalion, held a commemorative run, Sept. 9, in Lafayette, to honor the victims of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.
The morning started with runners watching a video of the attacks that happened 22 years ago. Once the video was completed, each runner collected a collage of pictures showing victims of that day to carry with them as they ran.
Army Master Sgt. Dawn Moreau, the recruiting section chief in Lafayette, explained that most young participants were born after 9/11, and the video allowed them to not only see the sequence of the events but also the reactions to that day and the unity of the country thereafter.
“September 12th is the message we want these kids to remember and live by; regardless of race, gender and age, we are one country and one family,” said Moreau. “Carrying the pictures was to help them remember who we were running for.”
“Not one trainee quit, fell out or gave up,” said Sgt. 1st Class Ralph Dunn, senior cadre and drill sergeant at Detachment 7. “These trainees are brand new, and yet they still showed resiliency to give it their all to ensure that every photograph of every victim made it to the end.”
In addition to the collage, runners ran in formation while singing cadences and carrying the American Flag with them. During the run, participants interacted with community members and partnered with Lafayette Police Department to block traffic along the run route.
“It is a hard topic for those who lived through 9/11 and the aftermath, but it is monumental that we continue to pass down the importance of what occurred on those days,” said Dunn. “Those unspeakable moments brought together a nation within minutes.”