Pasadena Officials Honor and Remember the Heroes of 9/11 at Benefit Luncheon

Pasadena Fire Chief Calvin Wells with Pasadena Chief of Police Phillip L. Sanchez at the event.Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard addresses the group.911 CommemorationPasadena City Manager Michael J. Beck911 Commemoration911 Commemoration911 Commemoration911 Commemoration911 Commemoration911 Commemoration911 CommemorationEvent organizer Steve Tobia, Commander John Perez, Eden Garden Restaurant Owner Edward Moriarty and Pasadena Chief of Police Phillip L. Sanchez

By MYKO CHIONG | Photography by JAMES MACPHERSON

6:12 am | September 12, 2012


Pasadena officials including Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard, Fire Chief Calvin E. Wells, and Police Chief Phillip L. Sanchez, gathered along with members of the community Tuesday, Sept. 11 at the Eden Garden restaurant on Holly Street to give special tribute to the fallen heroes who died during the terrorist attacks on our country 11 years ago.

The event, organized by Edward Moriarity, owner of Eden Garden, and Steve Tobia, Publisher, The Media Group, also acknowledged and gave thanks to the brave men and women of Pasadena’s Public Safety departments who help protect and serve Pasadena’s residents, businesses and visitors every day.  A percentage of the proceeds were to be donated to the Pasadena Police & Fire Explorer Posts.

“These are events that we should never forget,” Pasadena Mayor Bill Bogaard said in his statement. “We should remember in a way that has a positive impact on our lives going forward, and the starting point for that is to express gratitude to those of you who are here today – persons in the public service, persons in public safety, persons who are prepared to put themselves in harm’s way when that’s needed to protect the public interest.”

The tragic and horrible attacks on America on Sept. 11, 2001 will always be remembered as one of the most defining moments in the history of the United States of America.

City Manager Michael J. Beck also spoke of his views on the tragedy.

“When we think about 9/11, there are many images that come to mind for so many reasons,” Beck said. “The most significant image that is emblazoned in my mind was the image of the uniformed police and firefighters running in to the twin towers after its been hit, and moments later we see those towers collapse, and we know that the individuals in those buildings – those individuals in uniform –they may not have understood the complete catastrophe that they were running into, but they understood the danger, and they ran in.

“I know enough of all of you in this room to know that if we were faced with such a disaster in this city, you would be there to serve, and you would be giving everything you can to the city of Pasadena… for that I commend you, I thank you, and keep up the great work. I’m so proud of you,” Beck told the gathering, which was largely comprised of police officers.

Fire Chief Calvin E. Wells also looked back on the tragedy, recounting what we, as a nation, lost and what we continue to draw from it.

“The fire service as a whole clearly suffered the darkest day in American fire service history on September 11th,” recounted Wells. “In New York they lost 343 firefighters, 23 police officers, and 31 Port Authority police offers. Over 2,000 first responders were significantly injured as a result of the event that unfolded that day,” he continued.

“I think it’s important…that we remember the lessons learned in that tragedy. Because the reality is simply this: if we had a similar incident today, men and women in uniform will do exactly each and every day – to go through the door. You don’t know what’s on the other side of the door, but part of our charge is to go through the door, and that’s precisely what our fallen brothers and sisters did on that fateful day,” said Wells.

Pasadena Police Chief Phillip Sanchez spoke solemnly.

“Courage, dedication, compassion, and commitment are terms often associated with First Responders. That was the case on September 11, 2001 and it remains true today in Pasadena,” said Sanchez, adding that “First Responders and their families know all too well the cost of freedom. Yet every day, they place themselves in harm’s way to ensure the quality of life in our community is not eroded, the vulnerable are protected, basic human rights are reaffirmed, and predators are aggressively pursued,”

“If we hope to honor the police officers, fire fighters, and military personnel who have made the ultimately sacrifice since September 11th, then we must live our lives courageously and with purpose,” closed Sanchez in his message.

In observance of Patriot Day, Sept. 11, City buildings and facilities were ordered to fly the U.S. flag at half-staff from sunrise to sunset.