LT. STEVEN BIVENS and his daughter Hayden, age 4, rang the Fire Department’s ceremonial bell in memory of those lost on 9/11.


WAKEFIELD — The 20th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States was observed with “An Evening of Remembrance” on Veterans Memorial Common at dusk on Saturday evening.

Veterans Service Officer David Mangan led those in attendance in the Pledge of Allegiance to open the half hour long ceremony, followed by welcoming remarks by Rev. Glenn Mortimer of Wakefield-Lynnfield Methodist Church.

“We remember September 11, 2001,” Rev. Mortimer said, “the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City, the plane crashing into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, the plane flown into the ground in rural Pennsylvania.

“We mourn the lives lost,” he continued. “We grieve for the families of the dead. We grieve the loss of our innocence. We pray for God’s presence and healing, for reconciliation, for peace with justice.”

Following a moment of silence, a series of town officials approached the microphone to acknowledge those who were lost.

Town Council Chair Julie Smith-Galvin noted that at 8:46 a.m., American Airlines Flight 11 out of Boston struck the north tower of the World Trade Center, killing 81 passengers, including Wakefield resident David DiMeglio, age 22. Nine flight attendants and two pilots were also killed.

School Committee member Thomas Markham recalled that at 9:02 a.m. American Airlines flight 175 struck the south tower of the World Trade Center, killing 58 passengers, seven flight attendants and two pilots.

Veterans Advisory Board member Kristie Yentile noted that at 9:43 a.m. American Airlines flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon, killing 58 passengers, four flight attendants and two pilots.

DPW Director Joseph Conway recalled that at 10:29 a.m., United Airlines Flight 93 was crashed into a field near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, killing 37 passengers, five flight attendants and two pilots.

Fire Chief Michael Sullivan remembered the sacrifices of all the firefighters who responded to the attacks, especially the 343 who lost their lives. He also remembered the New York Port Authority workers, emergency medical personnel, military personnel, construction workers and chaplains who responded to the attacks, especially those who lost their lives.

Police Chief Steven Skory remembered all the police officers who responded in the line of duty, in particular the 60 who lost their lives in the attacks. He remembered all 2,977 individuals who were killed in the attacks, along with their survivors, who continue to mourn them.

After each group was acknowledged, Wakefield Fire Lt. Steven Bivens and his 4-year-old daughter, Hayden, tolled the Fire Department’s ceremonial bell.

Rabbi Greg Hersh of Temple Emmanuel read a prayer called “Mourner’s Kaddish,” first in Hebrew and then in English, on behalf of all who lost their lives on 9/11.

Rev. Mortimer then offered a scriptural reading from the Old Testament.

Rev. Elizabeth Assenza, pastor of the Unitarian Universalist Church, followed with a reading.

Violinist Olga Kaminsky performed “Dona Nobis Pacem.”

The Reverend John Dale, Senior Pastor at the First Congregational Church, offered a reading from Holy Scripture.

An intercessory prayer was offered by Rev. Doug Dry of the First Baptist Church and Rev. Stephanie Chase Bradbury of Emmanuel Episcopal Church.

A moment of personal reflection was followed by “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” performed by violinist Olga Kaminski.

After the lighting of candles, Rev. Mortimer and Rabbi Hersh offered closing blessings.