Students create visual reminder of 9-11

September 10, 2010 3:24:10 PM PDT
Nine years ago Saturday, our nation was brought to its knees by shock and grief when two jetliners flew directly into the World Trade Center towers. And while so much controversy is swirling over a mosque being built near Ground Zero and a pastor's plan to burn the Quran, a group of local students are focusing on remembering all those lives lost.

This is a tradition that began a year ago, when some students at Klein Oak High School thought of a way they could honor those who were killed on September 11, 2001.

You don't have to count the flags in front of Klein Oak to know how many there are.

There is one for every man, woman, and child who died nine years ago -- just under 3,000 flags.

Erica Justice is one of the students who placed the flags here.

"I'm thinking of every individual person and the people that they impacted, because everyone left someone behind," Justice said. "And I think about the people who maybe didn't get to say goodbye to their families."

Justice was in third grade when the terrorists hijacked four planes, slamming two of them into the World Trade Center towers in New York, the Pentagon in Washington D.C. and a field in Pennsylvania.

"I remember going home and seeing on TV what had happened," she said. "I didn't understand, but now I really, I think I understand more now than I did back then."

And that appreciation is what has driven the Young Conservatives Club at Klein Oak to place these flags.

A year ago, they raised the $2,000 it took to buy them.

"The events of that day left an incredible impact even on people who were very young," said Gary Nelson, the club's sponsor.

Justice says these flags mean a lot to the community; veterans and others have told them that.

And that's why they say they'll keep doing it as a needed reminder.

"I feel that all the time that has passed, people are starting to forget and that can't happen," Justice said.

The flags will stay on the school's front lawn until Sunday evening. Then the students will remove them one by one, store them, and pull them out again next year.


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