Local VFW post honors sacrifices on 9/11

By Tyler Tyre, Times Sports Editor
Posted 9/11/21

“It should be remembered for the incredible sacrifice that took place there and for the numerous acts of courage that people did,” Mastrangelo said. “People ran to help each other, we’re all American and sometimes we forget that, but 9/11 can help remind us of that.”

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Local VFW post honors sacrifices on 9/11

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People gathered Saturday at the Veterans of Foreign Wars building to remember the Tragedy that took place 20 years ago on Sept. 11.

The VFW Post 9182 held a ceremony to remember the event as well as honor local first responders for their efforts in the Katy community.

It took a week of preparation and lots of hard work, but was worth it for the people that were in attendance.

“It was a lot of time and hard work and we really tried to spread the message to let people know it was happening, “ said Don Byrne, the VFW Post 9182 commander. “We sent information out through email, any way we could on the web, with Facebook and word of mouth. I was up until 2 a.m. this morning finishing things and it means a lot to me that it was successful.”

There was a large attendance at the event, and the chance to grieve amongst one another meant a lot to everyone involved.

“It means everything to have so many people out here and to be around them today,” said retired colonel and former post commander Mike Mastrangelo. “This is my family, we share experiences that are unique to maybe one or two percent of the population. It means the world to me to have them here and it’s because of them that we are able to do things like this.”

Mastrangelo was the guest speaker at the event and spoke about his experience during 9/11. Both Mastrangelo and Byrne were in Virginia at the time and felt the effects of the attack on the Pentagon.

Mastrangelo was supposed to go to the Pentagon the afternoon of the 11th when he got news of the evacuation taking place, while Byrne was in Richmond.

“There’s two things that have affected me more than anything else in my life and that is 9/11 and the Virginia Tech shooting because I knew one of the students that tried to stop the shooter. Those two things affect me more than anything else because I knew someone involved with Virginia Tech and with 9/11 because I knew the area so well and it was so close to me that it just hit me.”

Multiple people recited poems during the event before they honored first responders and it culminated with a 21-gun salute and closing prayer.

Mastrangelo believes its extremely important to continue to educate people about 9/11 and what happened and hopes that it will still remain something that the country never forgets.

“It should be remembered for the incredible sacrifice that took place there and for the numerous acts of courage that people did,” Mastrangelo said. “People ran to help each other, we’re all American and sometimes we forget that, but 9/11 can help remind us of that.”

Byrne knows that holding events such as these are important in bringing people together and honoring the lives that were lost, and he hopes to continue with the tradition of having a ceremony every year.

“It’s so important,” Byrne said. “It gets the parents bringing their kids in, it helps them understand. It’s something we have to continue, we do memorial day, this and veterans day on top of lots of things with our honor guard. People need to see this exposure of 9/11, so often you can put those memories aside and not think about it, but we have to continue doing this and it’s great that the city supports it.”

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