Batavia VFW hosts Patriot day to remember events of 9/11
The Batavia Overseas Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1197 and Auxiliary hosted a Patriot Day tribute Friday to honor everyone lost on Sept. 11, 2001.
About 125 people safely social-distanced themselves as they gathered on the 6-acre lawn behind the VFW building.
Country artist and U.S. Marine Corps veteran Bill Gray performed a free outdoor concert, pausing for a memorial reflection at exactly 7 p.m. to honor 9/11 and post-9/11 veterans and first responders.
Gray slowly read the events that took place that day 19 years ago.
"That was as tough to read as it was to hear," admitted Gray after finishing addressing the crowd.
Mary Ellen Hollis of Elmwood Park wiped away a tear as it rolled down her cheek during the program. She said she usually attends at least two ceremonies for Sept. 11.
"COVID-19 has over taken everything," Hollis said. " ... We will take back our country."
Local police and fire departments were on hand and recognized by the crowd after Gray thanked them.