Community of Clovis Honors 9/11 Victims (Video)

With the help of Clovis community members, military personnel and other law enforcement groups from around the country, victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks were honored by patriotic songs and displays of remembrance. 

The morning service also featured an appearance from Andrew Isolano, a former New York City firefighter who was one of the brave men and women who responded to the call on September 11, 2001. 

Isolano spoke of the courage, the shock and the pain of that day and the following days after. He wanted to make sure as a community and as a country, we understand the importance of September 12 and how the country united around each other. 

The former firefighter also gave a special message of thanks to the late David McDonald, the former CEO of Pelco (the site of the 9/11 memorial) and adamant supporter of first-responders from that day 18 years ago.

McDonald established a link between the 9/11 attack and the city of Clovis by flying all the first-responders from New York to California where they were given a heroes welcome.

And some Clovis residents, like Efraen Gomez, believe McDonald’s generosity then helped bring the community together. 

“He was a great man. My brother used to work for him and when my brother wanted to become a firefighter, McDonald paid for it all,” Gomez said. “He was always supportive of the people.”

His generosity has led Pelco to many successes before his passing earlier this year, including the first 9/11 memorial for those lost on his property. 

But now, Pelco offers another commemorative area. 

The 9/11 memorial which features a replica of the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, etched with all the lives lost on that day and also numerous plaques and the design expansion incorporates the position of the sun to cast light on the bronze statue at the exact same time of the first attack at 8:46 a.m. 

The memorial stands as a reminder for some, but also opens the eyes of many, especially those that were too young to fully understand. 

“My son, he’s in the fire academy now and he wants to give back to his community and country like those people did on 9/11,” Gomez said. “He was young back then, but I think it’s important to tell them and show them what happened. My son is sitting right there in one of the seats. Service to our country is something that is very important in my family and that’s why I am here.” 

Also in attendance were numerous grade schools, law enforcement agencies and fire departments from all over the country. 

They bared witness to radio dispatches from the fateful morning, a pipe and drum detail that played “Amazing Grace”, the ringing of the fire bell and a wreath procession to honor the fallen. 

The event continued in the afternoon with a flag folding ceremony, an art showcase and a patriotic concert.

For the past three years, Nugesse has been a vital part of the Madera Tribune covering sports, news, entertainment and feature writing. Nugesse’s ability to interact with the community allows him to promote students, athletes and community members with fairness and objectivity. We are happy to have Nugesse join our team here at the Clovis Roundup.