Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- Central New Yorkers participated in several area remembrances to honor those who died in the attacks on 9/11.
In Syracuse, a solemn and moving ceremony was held at Fayette Firefighters Park, where 17 minutes of silence was observed representing the length of time between the first jet striking the north tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m. and the second jet striking the south tower of the World Trade Center at 9:03 a.m.
"Sometimes silence speaks louder to people in the audience than the politicians of myself or anybody betting up there trying to put words to this day,” said Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner.
First Deputy Chief Charlie Duffy was at work that fateful day and like many of us, he remembers exactly what he was doing after coming back from a call when he learned a second tower had been hit and that both had collapsed.
“It was just shocking to me as a firefighter and as a human…everybody just had that same look on their face that day,” Duffy said.
With each passing year, ‘that day’ only seems to get harder as the chief reflects on those he considered one of his own – those who went into the burning towers and never made it out.
"I was watching some of the documentaries on TV and you get choked up when you see the firefighters going in the building and looking up. You know that's fear in their eyes, but they didn't turn around, they went in,” Duffy continued.
And it’s that courage that prevailed in those in uniform and those that were not that Chief Duffy never wants to forget.