AIR FORCE ACADEMY – Most of the cadets currently attending Air Force Academy were not yet born, nor old enough to remember the events that took place on September 11, 2001. Some weren’t even born on the day of the attacks.
“People, when they hear my birthday is on 9/11, they kind of have this, taken aback, like oh. And I can see they remember another event besides my birthday,” Cadet Second Class Kai Gill.
Many say it has still impacted their lives through the memories and stories passed down from those who lived through it.
“Growing up in New York we heard about it all the time. You go to the airports and you see the increased security, and you don’t know what that is for until I heard the story, and I got to go to the museum in the city,” said C3C Emma Redmond. “And then I finally got to hear my dad’s story. And I knew he had been there that day, but he only told us what it meant recently because it was so painful.”
Many of the cadets say their decision to serve was influenced by the attacks, having enlisted to prevent a scenario like 9/11 from ever happening again.
“A big thing for me is doing them justice,” said C3C Max Buck about the first responders that sprung into action that morning in 2001. “Making sure that while I still breathe, they are remembered for what they did and who they were.”