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Guest Column: State Sen. Tom O'Mara
ALBANY, Sept. 10 -- One piece of legislation I sponsored
earlier this year, as chairman
For each and every American generation, there are days and dates that become forever etched in the national consciousness. The attack on Pearl Harbor, and the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy, Robert F. Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. come to mind as examples.
And so while this year’s 9/11 observances arrive in the midst of a presidential election season here in New York State and across America, it simply cannot be overshadowed. It’s a day, most of us believe, that must always remain a day of remembrance and honor. Three months after the September 11th attacks, President George W. Bush said in a speech to the nation, “We will remember where we were and how we felt…And in our time we will honor the memory of the 11th day by doing our duty as citizens of this great country, freedom’s home and freedom’s defender.”
September 11th is recalled as one of our nation’s darkest, most shattering days. Yet it’s also recalled as a day when Americans, everywhere, were bound together in mourning and outrage, perseverance and strength – and an overwhelming desire to somehow respond. This undeniable national spirit has carried on and will be on display again this week in services in so many American communities.
We see it, maybe most of all, within the respect we carry for our police officers, firefighters, EMTs and other first responders. Not long ago in this column, in fact, I had the opportunity to express a collective thanks to all of the men and women who responded in the aftermath of the tornado that struck Elmira and several surrounding communities in late July. It bears repeating here that we must always raise a heartfelt salute to all of our local police officers, firefighters and other emergency responders for their immediate, courageous and capable first response and dedication. We’re always reminded, it seems, that our communities are truly fortunate to have these men and women constantly on guard and standing ready to protect our lives and property, safety and security.
And we see it in our ongoing expressions of gratitude and respect for our veterans, and the servicemen and servicewomen serving at this very moment to protect and promote freedom here at home, and around the world.
Last September arrived with the opening of the National September 11 Memorial in New York City, on the now sacred ground where the Twin Towers once stood. This memorial takes its place among other national sites memorializing the sacrifices and the tragedies which mark our nation, places like Gettysburg and other Civil War battlefields, and the powerful remembrances of World War II, Korea and Vietnam that define our nation’s capital.
You can read these words -- and many others -- on the National September
11 Memorial website (www.911memorial.org): “The National September
11 Memorial is a tribute of remembrance and honor to the nearly 3,000
people killed in the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 at the World
Trade Center site, near Shanksville, Pa., and at the Pentagon, as well
as the six people killed in the World Trade Center bombing in February
1993. The Memorial’s twin reflecting pools are each nearly an acre
in size and feature the largest manmade waterfalls in North America. The
We must always honor September 11th. These remembrances are important – to honor the memory of the fallen, to rekindle the heroism of those who responded, and to reenergize the spirit of resolve that has helped our nation recover.
Photo in text: State Senator Tom O'Mara
Schuyler County Officials
Top row (from left): Dennis Fagan, Thomas Gifford, Doris Karius, Glenn Larison
Bottom row: Michael A. Yuhasz, Barbara Halpin, Phil Barnes, Stewart Field
Dennis Fagan, Tyrone 607-292-3687
Michael A. Yuhasz, 535-4967
Doris L. Karius, 546-5544
Barbara Halpin, 594-3683
Glenn R. Larison, 594-3385
Thomas M. Gifford, 535-9517
Phil Barnes, Watkins Glen 481-0482
Stewart Field, Watkins Glen 535-2335
County Clerk: Linda Compton, 535-8133
Sheriff: William Yessman, 535-8222
Undersheriff: Breck Spaulding, 535-8222
County Treasurer: Margaret Starbuck, 535-8181
District Attorney: Joseph Fazzary, 535-8383
State, Federal Officials for Schuyler County
Sen. Charles E. Schumer
United States Senate
Sen. Kirsten E. Gillibrand
United States Senate
State Senator Tom O'Mara -- Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben, Yates, western Tompkins, Enfield, Ithaca (Town and City), Newfield, Ulysses(Trumansburg)
Room 812, Legislative Office Building
Assemblyman Christopher Friend --
Chemung, Schuyler, Tioga
P.O. Box 365
Odessa, New York 14869