BELLEVUE, Neb. (KMTV) — Reflection, gratitude and remembrance were on display at American Heroes Park in Bellevue.
"The fact that you have come out... symbolizes the care that we as Americans have for those who we lost and those who have sacrificed, I'm sure you like us will be here as long as you draw breath," Bellevue Kiwanis Club Project Coordinator Bill O'Donnell said.
O'Donnell started the ceremony in 2002 and continues it every year.
"9/11 brought this country together, probably like nothing else ever has," he said. "We get the politicians backbiting at each other, and different factions sniping at each other, at least this is a time for us to come back together and remember that we are one united people."
O'Donnell believes the lessons we take away from tragedy will be ones we hold dear forever.
"What really matters is that spirit of unity and doing the right thing for the right reasons, taking care of each other, regardless of nationality, regardless of race or ethnicity," he said.
Roy Kessell, a retired Air Force pilot and Lieutenant Colonel, says remembering those who sacrificed is the least we could do to say "thank you."
"Keep in mind that freedom really isn't free, people have to make sacrifices to keep everybody able to do what they are supposed to do," Kessell said.
The Kiwanis Club of Bellevue sponsored the ceremony.