PACE — S.S. Dixon Primary School started a tradition on the first anniversary of the 9/11 attacks in New York City and the Pentagon when they held their first remembrance day for the victims of the terrorist attacks
The school prefers to call their event Patriot Day and the school held their 17th Patriots Day on Wednesday.
"We have had Patriot Day since the first anniversary of the attacks," said teacher Tanya Martin. "We normally have it inside, in the cafeteria, but this year we have fire trucks, K-9 units and the Life Flight helicopter coming."
The school normally has the event on the actual anniversary day of the attacks, but scheduling conflicts with the auditorium caused them to have this year's remembrance on Sept 10.
This year's Patriot Day was on the school's athletic fields across the street. Although it was hot outside the students were excited to see all the activity and the displays of fire trucks, police vehicles, the Santa Rosa County Sheriff's Office K-9 units and a helicopter.
Second grad teacher Carla Molyet got her hairstylist, Emily Vervoort, to volunteer to sing the National Anthem after she was told about the event.
Molyet was master of ceremonies and kept the event moving quickly because of the summer-like heat. Molyet also explained what happened on Sept. 11, 2001, and why they were having Patriot Day to the students.
The Pace High School NJROTC presented the colors. First responders and military members from NAS Whiting Field lined up behind the color guard.
Then students could go look at the emergency vehicles and meet with their guests.
"We have an event for any military holiday or day of remembrance," Martin said. “We are very proud of our first responders and military.”