Statement by Supreme President Jimmy Kokotas, a native of Brooklyn, N.Y., on the 21st anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks:
“On the solemn twenty-first anniversary of September 11th, we remember the nearly 3,000 people, including 39 Greek Americans, who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks against the United States. We will never forget their sacrifice and our thoughts and prayers will always be with them and their families. May their memories be eternal.
“In times of tragedy, there are always individuals, whether they are emergency first responders or ordinary, everyday civilians, who are the first to respond. We salute and are forever grateful for their brave acts of heroism on that fateful day.
“We witnessed the glorious Consecration of the Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and National Shrine at the World Trade Center on July 4. It was a date chosen because, as Archbishop Elpidophoros of America eloquently stated, ‘we forever bind the witness of the Shrine to the witness of what it means to be an American – tolerant of diversity of beliefs, respectful of other faith traditions, and yet committed to a place for Faith in the public square.’ The Shrine will be a beacon for peace and a harbor for reflection for all. The AHEPA family proudly contributed to the worthy endeavor to rebuild Saint Nicholas, and we look forward to its completion.
“Additionally, today is a National Day of Service and Remembrance. AHEPA encourages the community to not only remember the victims of September 11, but also to honor their memories by participating in acts of service to help strengthen our cities, towns, and neighborhoods. Service is our essence and many of our communities are in need. Together, we can all play an important role and provide a positive impact through volunteerism in support of service initiatives and in remembrance of September 11.”