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MCLB remembers 9/11

Col. Donald Davis, commanding officer of Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, provides remarks at a 9/11 observance on the base Tuesday morning.

Col. Donald Davis, commanding officer of Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, provides remarks at a 9/11 observance on the base Tuesday morning.

MCLB-ALBANY, Ga. — As base operations were getting back to normal following a power outage stemming from a Monday fire on Marine Corps Logistics Base-Albany, officials on the installation paused to remember lives that had been lost 11 years earlier in New York, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania.

The installation hosted a brief ceremony on Tuesday as the morning colors were going up to reflect on the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks that killed roughly 3,000 people.

The ceremony started with words from Lt. Kenneth Miller, the base's chaplain, that attempted to put the events of 9/11 into perspective.

"While most of us can remember what we were doing, the question we ask is why?" he said. "I have two thoughts on that. We live in a world where both good and evil are present, and we as individuals make a choice (as to whom or what we serve).

"Something that could have crippled us made us stronger. While we remember those who have fallen, (the attacks) did make our country stronger."

As Marines, some of those attached to the base have been put in the position of running toward danger rather than from it, just as the first responders from New York, many of whom perished, did at the World Trade Center 11 years ago.

That factor adds a unique perspective for many. Such is the case with Col. Donald Davis, commanding officer of MCLB-Albany, who served in the first Gulf War.

"This is not just about that day," he said. "We meet here today because the War on Terror is not just our war anymore. Ten years later, it's our children's war."

For MCLB specifically, the campaigns in the Middle East over the last several years have resulted in the base's lights staying on longer as well as more vehicles coming in and out of what is now Marine Depot Maintenance Command.

For some working on the installation, 9/11 could potentially serve as a motivator for a quality work ethic.

"It is easy to say 'don't forget,'" Davis said. "The truth is that most Americans are forgetting. As a Marine, I ask you never to forget.

"Remember the fallen of that day. Remember who have fallen since. What we do here today ensures they did not die in vain."

As for the colonel himself, the 9/11 observance serves as a reminder that freedom is not free — as well as the significance of what it means for a service member to serve his or her country.

"We love our country, and we love what we do," Davis said after the observance. "It's an honor and something we take great pride in."

The ceremony ended with a playing of "Taps" as well as a moment of silence for those who perished in the attacks.

The event was one of many taking place in Albany as well as throughout the country in acknowledgment of the events from the 2001 attacks. One of them was the Field of Flags ceremony that was held near the Albany Mall Tuesday evening, which featured Davis as a guest speaker.