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History Students Remember September 11
History Students Remember September 11
Posted on 09/11/2021
America was forever changed on Sept. 11, 2001, and history teachers at C.A. Erwin High are ensuring the next generation never forgets it.By: Benjamin Rickert
BCS Communications Dept.

Twenty years after the deadliest terrorist attack on U.S. soil, the nation still mourns the loss of nearly 3,000 people and celebrates the heroism of those who worked to save them. America was forever changed on September 11, 2001, and a group of history teachers at Clyde A. Erwin High School are ensuring the next generation will never forget it.

“We’re trying to give them a more personal connection to what happened that day,” said social studies teacher Mr. Ronnie Coren. “Instead of having just a bunch of numbers on a page, we’re trying to put a face to it.”

On Friday, Erwin social studies classes of all grade levels remembered the tragedy. On two halls, students rotated between different classrooms, considering the events from social, political, and personal perspectives. One group of tenth graders began in Ms. Becky Golliher’s classroom where they listened to recorded testimonials of survivors, first responders, family members, and witnesses to the attack. Each student wrote an account of one person’s experience. Across the room in Mr. Coren’s room, students watched and discussed the short documentary “The Man in the Red Bandana.” The piece told the story of Welles Crowther, a hero who repeatedly entered the crumbling twin towers to lead survivors to safety before ultimately losing his own life when the structures collapsed. In Mr. Brian McKoewn and Mr. Tate MacQueen’s classrooms, students considered deeper political and social aspects of these events, America’s response, and how people were affected. On another hall, students listened to recordings of phone calls made by airplane passengers shortly before impact.

“During this important week leading up to 9/11, our history department provided students with a focused opportunity to learn and reflect,” explained Erwin Principal Chip Cody. “It allowed students to connect historical events — events they did not experience — to the impact made on their current lives, as well as make connections to the individuals that lost their lives and made a difference during this crisis.”

Mason Coren, a tenth grader, said he would remember Crowther’s heroic story and the ways the U.S. president both comforted the nation and addressed the attackers.

“I’m just thinking about all the people we lost and how we can live on knowing what they did,” he said. “Welles went up 20 floors, grabbed people, took them down the stairs to firefighters, and some of them lived.”

“Everybody who died was somebody,” added classmate Kelson Rymer. “And the people that tried to save people that day, we’ve got to remember them.”

The City of Asheville will hold a 9-11 Remembrance Ceremony on Sept. 11, 2021, at 8:30 a.m. at the City Municipal Building, 100 Court Plaza.

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