'A tribute to those who have fallen': List of 9/11 remembrances throughout suburbs this week

  • Crowds gather annually at the Cmdr. Dan Shanower Sept. 11 Memorial on the Naperville Riverwalk to honor the nearly 3,000 victims who perished in the 2001 terrorist attacks.

      Crowds gather annually at the Cmdr. Dan Shanower Sept. 11 Memorial on the Naperville Riverwalk to honor the nearly 3,000 victims who perished in the 2001 terrorist attacks. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • The Cmdr. Dan Shanower Sept. 11 Memorial serves as a focal point of an annual remembrance ceremony along the Naperville Riverwalk. "It's a tribute to those who have fallen," said Naperville native Tom Shanower, the older brother of the memorial's namesake, who died in the 2001 attacks.

    The Cmdr. Dan Shanower Sept. 11 Memorial serves as a focal point of an annual remembrance ceremony along the Naperville Riverwalk. "It's a tribute to those who have fallen," said Naperville native Tom Shanower, the older brother of the memorial's namesake, who died in the 2001 attacks. Daily Herald file photo

Updated 9/11/2021 8:56 AM

"Where were you when the world stopped turning?"

The titular lyrics of country singer Alan Jackson's emotional ballad, released in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks serve as the foundation around which this year's remembrance ceremony in Naperville is built.


Amid moments of reflection will be an underlying message of healing, event Chairman Marty Walker says, as community leaders and residents gather along the Naperville Riverwalk to honor the nearly 3,000 people who died when tragedy struck 20 years ago.

"It's about remembering where we were and healing for the future," Walker said.

Among the victims was Naperville native Cmdr. Dan Shanower, a 40-year-old Naval intelligence officer who was working at the Pentagon when it was struck by the hijacked American Airlines Flight 77. A memorial dedicated to him, and all who perished, now stands along the Riverwalk, serving as the focal point for ceremonies held each year since its installation in 2003.

Sponsored by the Exchange Club of Naperville, this year's remembrance promises to be simple yet meaningful, Walker said, as organizers aim to honor the 20th anniversary of the attacks while also being mindful of COVID-19 precautions.

The ceremony begins at 8:46 a.m. on Sept. 11 -- the exact time the first plane struck the World Trade Center's North Tower 20 years ago.

The event will feature the Honor Guard, made up of VFW Post 3873 and American Legion Post 43 members, as well as live music from the Naperville Municipal Band, the Naperville Men's Glee Club and the Highland Guard of Naperville.

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Guest speakers include former Chicago Fire Commissioner Jose Santiago and Naperville Fire Chief Mark Puknaitis. They are expected to touch on the preparations taken to keep their communities safe during that time, Walker said, while also "maintaining the theme of healing and coming together as a country."

While Shanower's mom and other relatives plan to attend an observance in Washington, two of his nieces are expected to represent the family during the Naperville event.

"I think it's tremendous that the city does this and continues to do it. The number of people who come is just fantastic," said Shanower's older brother, Tom. "It's a tribute to those who have fallen.

Other remembrance events

• College of DuPage is gathering stories from the community to help capture the diverse perspective of that tragic day. Share your reflections for inclusion on the COD website at cod.edu/911/story.aspx. Describe where you were on 9/11, and how you learned about the attacks. How did the people around you react to the attacks? And over the past 20 years, what details or memories stand out?


• 'Sept. 11, 2001 -- The Day That Changed the World': 9/11 Memorial and Museum exhibit at Schaumburg Township District Library, 130 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg, during library hours through Sept. 30. For all ages. Archival photographs and images of artifacts from the museum's permanent collection will be featured. Poster exhibition recounts events of Sept. 11, 2001, through the personal stories of those who witnessed and survived the attacks. For information, SchaumburgLibrary.org or (847) 985-4000.

• Rare artifacts and images from ground zero: Artifacts and images taken by Barrington High School alumnus and official FDNY ground zero photographer Gary Marlon Suson will be on display at Barrington High School, with tours from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturdays, Sept. 11, Oct 2, and Nov. 6. This will mark the first public display of the Islamic Steel Crescent & Moon, a 120-lb artifact cut from World Trade Center steel in 2001 in honor of the Muslim office workers who perished in the collapse. Reserve free tickets at app.arts-people.com/index.php?show=129461.

Sept. 8-12

• Healing Fields in Oak Brook: Wednesday through Sunday, Sept. 8-12, at Sports Core Field, 700 Oak Brook Road, Oak Brook. Stirring display of 2,997 flags in a patriotic tribute on the 20th Anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001. Each U.S. flag represents an individual and tells a story. Flags may be sponsored to honor individuals who died that day. healingfield.org/event/oakbrookil21/.

Sept. 9

• Elmhurst University 9/11 commemoration: 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 9, on Zoom and in Daniels Hall, Room 305, at Elmhurst University, 190 S. Prospect Ave., Elmhurst. "I Was on Campus on 9/11," is a time for reflection and discussion led by alumni and the Office of the Chaplain. The panel of alumni and faculty will reflect on that day, what they've learned 20 years later, and offer thoughts on the future. Sign up for the Zoom link at elmhurst.edu.

• Glendale Heights Patriot Day American flag display: On Thursday, Sept. 9, the Kiwanis Club of Glendale Heights are planting 2,977 American flags in front of Glendale Heights Village Hall in remembrance of the victims lost on Sept. 11, 2001. Additional American flags will be placed along Fullerton Avenue along the route of the Silent Parade, set for 7:15 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11. glendaleheights.org.

Sept. 11

• Antioch Remembers: 11 a.m. to noon, 210 Oakwood Drive (Memorial Triangle). A Day of Remembrance and memorial tree planting ceremony. Sponsored by the village and Oakwood Knolls Property Owners Association. Visit antioch.il.gov/.

• Arlington Heights Sept. 11th Remembrance Ceremony: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, beginning at First Presbyterian Church, 302 N. Dunton Ave., Arlington Heights. Ceremony will include a reading of the names of Fallen Heroes with music by the 484th Army Band Brass Revolution with the 2nd Battalion, 24th Marines Color Guard. Masks are required. After the ceremony, join for the opening of the Portrait of a Soldier exhibit at Arlington Heights Memorial Library, 500 N. Dunton Avenue. Reservations required to attend the ceremony, which includes a visit to the exhibit. Register the total number in your party. Safety precautions in place according to current local mitigation guidelines. For information, ahml.info.

• Aurora 9/11 ceremony: 7:45 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the RiverEdge Park bridge, 360 N. Broadway. Hosted by the Aurora police and fire departments and Mayor Richard C. Irvin, the ceremony will include six Aurora firefighters who were deployed to New York City immediately after the attacks: current Battalion Chief Jason Dema, Battalion Chief Randy Leek, Captain Will Torres and retired firefighters Gary Pozzi, Mark Lockwood, and Tim Pogue. Four memorial bells will toll to mark the times the four airplanes crashed at 7:46, 8:03 a.m., 8:37 a.m. and 9:03 a.m. Between the first and second bells, the names of the 38 victims born or who lived in Illinois will be read in tribute to all victims of the attacks. During the ceremony, Aurora Gold Star families will be recognized, remarks will be made by Mayor Irvin, Aurora Fire Chief Gary Krienitz, Aurora Police Chief Keith Cross, and Aurora Poet Laureate Karen Christensen; and a joint Aurora police and fire department honor guard will present the colors and lay a memorial wreath. Register at aurora-il.org/September11.

• Barrington 9/11 Ceremony: 10 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, at Memorial Park, 610 Dundee Ave., Barrington. The village of Barrington commemorates the 20th anniversary of 9/11 with a solemn ceremony. For information, barrington-il.gov.

• Mount Prospect 9/11 ceremony: 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Veteran's Memorial Band Shell at Lions Park, 411 S. Maple St., Mount Prospect. Mount Prospect Police and Fire Honor Guard, with members of the VFW, will present the Colors. Speakers will include Mayor Paul Hoefert, Police Chief John Koziol, Fire Chief John Dolan, Police and Fire Chaplain the Rev. Russ Bechtold, and WGN radio personality Dave Plier. Prospect High School's Knight Voices will sing the national anthem and Chicago Firefighter Gregg Bagdade will play the bagpipes. For information, call the Mount Prospect Fire Department at (847) 870-5660.

• Patriot Day memorial in Batavia: 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Batavia Overseas Veterans of Wars Post 1197, 645 S. River St. Music by Bill Gray starts at 6:30 p.m., followed by the memorial reflection at 7 p.m. Visit vfw1197.org.

• American String Quartet in Barrington: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Barrington's White House, 145 W. Main St., Barrington. The string quartet will perform Robert Sirota's Triptych, written to commemorate the victims of Sept. 11, 2001. For tickets and information, visit barringtonswhitehouse.com.

• Cantigny Park Heroes of 9/11 Memorial Ceremony: 11 to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, in the Tank Park at First Division Museum, 1S151 Winfield Road in Wheaton. Free event, no registration required. Families are welcome. Limited seating is available. Guests may bring lawn chairs and find seating in the park. Visit cantigny.org/event/heroes-of-9-11-memorial-ceremony/. Free parking for all first responders, military service members, and veterans who show their ID to the parking attendant during First Responders Appreciation Weekend from 7 a.m. to sundown Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 11-12.

• 2021 Chicagoland Memorial 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb and Walk: 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Soldier Field, 1410 S. Museum Campus, Chicago. Each participant pays tribute to an FDNY firefighter by climbing the equivalent of the 110 stories of the World Trade Center. The stair climbs fund the programs provided by the National Fallen Firefighters to support the families of local Illinois Line of Duty Death Fire Hero Families and the FDNY Counseling Services Unit. For information, nfff.akaraisin.com/ui/chicagoland.

• Chicago 9/11 Heroes Run 5K: 9 a.m. Saturday Sept. 11, in Lincoln Park, Chicago. The Travis Manion Foundation will host the 5K race to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, and honor the lives lost on 9/11 and in wars since, and honor veterans, military, and first responders. Registration is open for participants to run, walk, or ruck. For information or to register, visit travismanion.org.

• '9/11 20 Years Later: Our Community Remembers': 7:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, via livestream on the College of DuPage Facebook page. Presented from the college's Robert J. Miller Homeland Security Education Center, the ceremony includes reflections from COD President Brian Caputo, COD Homeland Security Training Institute Director Tom Brady, DuPage County Sherriff James Mendrick, Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company Assistant Chief Jim Sisson, and Mike Fagel, a certified emergency manager and Department of Justice 9/11 Task Force member. Visit cod.edu/911/.

• Crystal Lake 'A Day to Remember': noon Saturday, Sept. 11, at Union Cemetery, on Woodstock Street in Crystal Lake. Crystal Lake American Legion Post 171 and the City of Crystal Lake will host the 20th anniversary commemoration and Patriot Day. The city's fire and police departments and Mayor Haig Haleblian will be part of the program. Keynote speaker is Lt. Col. U.S. Army (Ret.) Ryan Yantis, a Crystal Lake resident and a decorated 9/11 survivor who was in the Pentagon when the plane struck. American Legion Post 171 will display American flags to represent those who died on 9/11 and in the following days. Event includes a wreath laying, a rifle salute and bagpipe performance. Visit facebook.com/AmericanLegionCrystalLake/.

• Elgin's Sept. 11 Remembrance Ceremony: 9-10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the newly renovated Civic Center Plaza, behind city hall within the Robert Gilliam Municipal Complex, 150 Dexter Court. The ceremony, held in partnership with the American Legion, will feature speakers and the national anthem performed by the Baptist Providence College Ensemble. It will remember those in public service who lost their lives and honor those who continue to serve today. Free; limited seating; participants may want to bring a chair. In the event of rain, the ceremony will move indoors to the Hemmens Cultural Center, 45 Symphony Way. cityofelgin.org/events.

• Elmhurst Patriot Day: 6 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Elmhurst Fire Station No. 2, 601 S. York St., Elmhurst. The city of Elmhurst hosts special 9/11 20th anniversary ceremony. Visit facebook.com/ElmhurstFireDepartment/.

• Geneva 9/11 Memorial Ceremony: 12:45 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, on the Festival of the Vine central stage, West State and North Fourth streets, Geneva. Join in a remembrance of the 20th anniversary of 9/11 as Andrea Schmidt sings the national anthem, accompanied by the duo, Paul and Jay. Visit genevachamber.com.

• Glen Ellyn 9/11 Memorial Service: 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, in front of Glen Ellyn Volunteer Fire Company headquarters (Station No. 61) at Main Street and Pennsylvania Avenue in downtown Glen Ellyn. Visit facebook.com/gevfc.

• Glendale Heights Patriot Day Silent Parade and Ceremony: 7:15 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11. The village is planning a silent parade of emergency personnel vehicles starting at approximately 7:15 p.m. at Reskin Elementary School, 1555 Ardmore Ave., and traveling a short distance west on Fullerton Avenue toward village hall, 300 Civic Center Plaza. A remembrance ceremony will be held at the village hall, with artifacts on display from the 9/11 attacks provided by the Glenside Fire Protection District. glendaleheights.org.

• Grayslake North High School: 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Grayslake North High School Black Box Theatre, 1925 N. Route 83, Grayslake. The Green Room Theatre Company at the high school will present a 9/11 20-Year Memorial Show to educate the audience about what happened that day, honor the heroes, and look forward in hope. Visit d127.org/north.

• Hanover Park 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony: 9 to 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Fire Station 15, 6850 Barrington Road, Hanover Park. The village of Hanover Park remembers and honors the men and women, police, firefighters and first responders who died Sept. 11, 2001, and all first responders who have given their lives in service to their communities. Visit hpil.org.

• Highland Park Sept. 11 observance: 9 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, at Fire Station 33, 1130 Central Ave., Highland Park. The City of Highland Park, the City of Highwood, Highland Park Public Library, North Shore School District 112, Park District of Highland Park, and Township High School District 113 -- Highland Park High School, will mark the 20th anniversary with a solemn remembrance ceremony. Singing of the national anthem, speeches about the significance of anniversary, Last Alarm Bell Ceremony, police and fire honor guards, and performances by Highland Park High School trumpet players. For information, cityhpil.com/september11.

• Hoffman Estates 9/11 Ceremony: 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the Veterans' Memorial in front of the Hoffman Estates Police Department, 411 W. Higgins Road, Hoffman Estates. The mayor and village board host a brief memorial service the 20th anniversary of 9/11. For information, hoffmanestates.org.

• Huntley 9/11 Ceremony: 9:11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, on the James C. Dhamer Town Square, off Coral Street. Visit huntley.il.us.

• Lake Zurich honor guard and memorial ceremony: The Lake Zurich Fire Department honors the 20th anniversary of 9/11 and kicks off the inaugural free Kids' Health and Safety Fair, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., on Sept. 11 at Foglia YMCA in Lake Zurich. The fair will include 40 exhibitors with activities and information, antique fire engine rides, water and boat safety, and college savings information for parents, as well as free walk-up COVID-19 vaccines available.

• Libertyville Sept. 11 memorial ceremony: 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Cook Park, Milwaukee Avenue and Cook Avenue in downtown Libertyville. Begins with a silent parade from the Metra train station south on Milwaukee Avenue to the park. Mayor Donna Johnson will make welcoming remarks. The keynote speaker is Capt. Jason Williamson, commanding officer, Naval Station Great Lakes. Event includes bell ceremony for victims, rendition of "Amazing Grace," pipes and drums from The Midlothian Pipe Band. There will be a banner with the victims' names. Visit libertyville.com/.

• A 9/11 remembrance ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11 at Adlai E. Stevenson High School, One Stevenson Drive (Route 22 just west of Route 45) in Lincolnshire. The guest speaker is Scott Schrimpe, a retired New York firefighter and North Tower survivor. A Stevenson High School Patriot Day/Family Fest follows from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Local police and fire departments, first responders, and U.S. military will participate. A climbing wall, games, a military vehicle and more are part of the event.

• Lombard 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony and Dedication: 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the Public Safety Plaza at Village Hall, 255 E. Wilson St. For details, call the fire department at (630) 620-5738.

• Long Grove 9/11 remembrance ceremony: 8 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at 1165 Old McHenry Road. The village of Long Grove, in partnership with the Long Grove Fire Protection District, will hold a 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony in the parking lot at the fire station. This outdoor ceremony is anticipated to last approximately 30 to 40 minutes. The event agenda will include Welcome remarks, blessing, presenting of colors, national anthem, remarks, plaque presentation, fire bell ceremony, singing of "God Bless America "and retiring of colors. For information, www.longgroveil.gov.

• Flags in the Air -- A Skydivers Tribute to 9/11: 9 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, at Chicagoland Skydiving Center, 1207 Gurler Road, Rochelle. Chicagoland Skydiving Center will participate in Flags in the Air -- A Skydivers Tribute to 9/11. Law enforcement personnel, firefighters, medical first responders, and veterans are invited to the drop zone for this all-day event. Around 5 p.m., there will be an aerial show to honor them as well as those who gave their lives on that day. Visit facebook.com/skydivecsc/.

• Softball Tournament: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Hasbrook Park, 333 W. Maude Ave., Arlington Heights. The DelBoccio|Marchetti Group will be hosting a softball tournament to honor police and fire departments, and pay tribute on the 20th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001. Featuring teams made up of Mount Prospect police and firefighters, Arlington Heights police and firefighters Local 3105, the games will start following a moment of silence to remember those lost. Bring the family and enjoy a morning at the park. There will be a face painter, raffles and several area food trucks. Info: (847) 495-2510.

• St. Charles ceremony: 7:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the St. Charles Fire Department Memorial Monument, 2 E. Main St. The ceremony honors first responders who put duty before self and those who lost their lives that day. The ceremony will begin with the posting of colors, followed by remarks, posting the Fire Department Memorial Flag, placing the memorial wreath, and a moment of silence. The ceremony will be posted on the City of St. Charles Facebook page. www.stcharlesil.gov.

• Streamwood remembrance: 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Streamwood Veterans Memorial, 301 E. Irving Park Road. The Veterans Memorial Commission and the Streamwood police and fire departments will hold a ceremony in observance of the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. The Streamwood Fire Department will also continue its tradition of remembering that day with a flag ceremony at 8:58 a.m. at each fire station. Free. streamwood.org

• Waubonsee Community College 9/11 remembrance event: 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the college, 4S783 Route 47, Sugar Grove. Doors open at 1:45 p.m. Waubonsee will commemorate the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attacks with an educational event of remembrance and renewal featuring a firsthand account of Joe Dittmar, who was attending a business meeting in Two World Trade Center during the attack in New York. Also, the documentary "In the Shadow of the Towers: Stuyvesant High on 9/11," will be shown. Free, but tickets are required. waubonseetickets.com.

• Wauconda 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony: 9:30 to 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at the Sept. 11 memorial near the Wauconda Police Station, 311 S. Main St., Wauconda. wauconda-il.gov.

• Waukegan 9/11 Remembrance: 9-10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Fireman's Memorial Park, 2115 Dover Road, Waukegan. Waukegan Fire Department hosts the 20th anniversary remembrance of Sept. 11, 2001. The public is welcome. waukeganil.gov.

• Men's Breakfast -- 9/11 20th Anniversary Memorial Ride: 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Willow Creek Community Church, 67 Algonquin Road, South Barrington. HighRoad Riders host the memorial ride, starting in Willow Creek parking Lot E. Event will include a brief devotion, ride to Rockford for breakfast at the Stockholm Inn, and visits to the 9/11 Emergency Responders Memorial and the Heroes of Freedom Memorial in Wauconda. The ride ends at the Algonquin Lake in the Hills Firefighter's Memorial. Total distance is 150 miles. For information, highroadriders.org.

• Wheaton 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony: 9 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, at Memorial Park, 225 Karlskoga Ave. in Wheaton. The city of Wheaton hosts 20th anniversary ceremony to honor the lives lost on Sept. 11, 2001. This event will include remarks by Mayor Phil Suess, the Wheaton fire and police departments, and others. Visit wheaton.il.us.

• Wheeling Brat Fest and Bags Tournament: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 11, Am Vets Post 66, 700 McHenry Road, Wheeling. Wheeling Helping Hands sponsors the event to commemorate the 20th anniversary of 9/11. The memorial will be at 1 p.m. Live Music by Time Machine will begin immediately after the ceremony. To register for the bags tournament, call Dean at (847) 845-6990 or email Carlos at restrepoc17@gmail.com with names of the participants. Registrations will be taken the day of the tournament from 11 a.m. to noon. The entry fee is $50 per team. Proceeds from food carryouts and a split-the-pot raffle benefit support Wheeling Police and Fire Department charitable activities.

Sept. 12

• 9/11 Ride to Remember in Woodstock: Sunday, Sept. 12, starting at Woodstock Harley-Davidson, 2235 S. Eastwood Drive, Woodstock. The fully escorted ride will end at the Oak Brook 9/11 Healing Field. Register online at truepatriotscare.com or Frank in the service department at Woodstock Harley-Davidson. Riders receive a lanyard with a memorial tag bearing the name of a person who died on Sept. 11, 2001. Cost is $50 per bike. Sponsoring 11 charities helping first responders and veterans.

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