By: Katie Jones
September 11th 2001, a day our country will never forget. During a remembrance ceremony at the Rock Island Arsenal, one Quad Citian spoke about experiencing the terror attacks first hand. Service members and employees on the Arsenal gathered at the Twin Towers Memorial to pay tribute to those who lost their lives on 9–11 and to the brave Americans who've died while fighting for our country.
On September 11th 2001, Brigadier General, Brian layer of Moline, was right in the heart of terror.
"I was in the Pentagon on 9–11 when the plane flew in right across the hallway from my office from that point on it was just chaotic," Brigadier General (Ret.) Brian Layer said.
General layer said he doesn't like to talk about what happened on that fateful day, but would rather reflect on the impact it's made on our country.
"We want to make sure that we remember the fallen and give tribute to their sacrifice," General Layer said.
Tuesday, General Layer stood in front of a crowd of fellow service members, city leaders and family of the fallen and paid tribute to the thousands of lives lost. But he said it's most important to remember the strength our country has gained from tragedy.
"It changed the course of our national history but I think what's more important is that we as Americans have defended what we stand for ... our freedom and liberty. How we've stood on the battlefield and at home as good neighbors. That's really the legacy of 9–11 is that we are better from it," General Layer said.
More than 250 bricks weighing over 2,000 pounds make up the Twin Tower memorial. Arsenal officials said the weight of the bricks serve as a reminder that we are still a nation at war and it continues to impact the lives of every American.