It has been nineteen years since the September 11 attacks that changed our world forever and for many it feels like yesterday.

Thousands of lives were lost that day and in the days and years that have followed with first responders and residents becoming ill from the wreckage.

For those lost and brave souls, we remember them in a close part of our hearts and minds forever.

On Friday, Ocean and Monmouth County Freeholders will hold special remembrance services to honor our heroes.

Ocean County Freeholders are hosting a Day of Remembrance and wreath-laying ceremony at the county’s September 11 Memorial Monument on Hooper Avenue.

The ceremony will begin at 8:30 am and include a moment of silence to remember the victims of the terrorist attacks on New York City, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania.

“While life has moved forward since that tragic day, we would be remiss if we didn’t take time to remember the events of September 11, 2001,” Ocean County Freeholder Director Joe Vicari, who will serve as master of ceremonies, said in prepared remarks. “So many of us stood frozen in time on that day, gathered around televisions and radios as we listened in horror that our great Country was under attack. Ocean County lost 19 residents that day and countless others with connections to the County. They were loved ones, moms, dads, brothers and sisters who went to work that morning like any other day, but they never returned to their loved ones.”

Vicari will be joined by Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer in placing a wreath at the September 11 Monument in the courtyard between 119 and 129 Hooper Avenues and a second wreath will be placed at the War on Terror Monument which is just a few feet away.

“On this day we remember the service personnel from Ocean County that made the ultimate sacrifice fighting for our freedoms during the ongoing War on Terror,” Vicari said.

The public is invited to attend the ceremony but must wear a mask during the ceremony.

The Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders will sponsor a “Tribute in Lights” for three nights beginning on Friday.

“Whether at an organized ceremony or privately, everyone should be granted the opportunity to honor and remember the tragic events that occurred on 9/11,” Freeholder Lillian Burry said in prepared remarks. “Now 19 years later, we remember those who died and recognize the thousands who survived. We remember American freedoms and liberties and we reaffirm our commitment to defend freedom against all enemies.”

Freeholder Burry said that the lights will be illuminated from sunset to 11 pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and they will be visible from Mount Mitchill Scenic Overlook.

“The Freeholders felt that it was incredibly important to sponsor these tribute lights to commemorate the 19th anniversary of the tragic attacks that occurred on 9/11,” Freeholder Director Tom Arnone said. “For the families of those lost and to those who are still fighting illnesses stemming from the cleanup, please know Monmouth County will never forget. We especially remember the 147 men and women who called our county home.”

There were 147 people from Monmouth County who perished in the 9/11 terrorists attacks.

There will be other remembrance services across Ocean and Monmouth Counties as well as across the state on Friday September 11.

In Middletown, Mayor Tony Perry will be reading the names of the 37 lives lost from the township in a morning ceremony.

You can follow Vin Ebenau on Twitter and Instagram and email news tips to vin.ebenau@townsquaremedia.com.

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