Our nation saw observed a Day of Remembrance last Friday, Sept. 11, the federally recognized national day of service, which was originally founded by nonprofit MyGoodDeed. MyGoodDeed’s mission is to “turn a day of tragedy into a day of doing good.” The website further writes, “We remember, honor and pay tribute to members of our 9/11 community — including friends and lost loved ones — by joining together in unity on this day.”

Despite events taking place online due to a global pandemic, the community in the Tri-Valley found ways to join together in socially distanced unity. The Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department held a virtual flag raising ceremony, which began early Friday morning and was later posted to YouTube. In Pleasanton, Tom Bernett Drive received its annual influx of flags and memorial tributes. Bernett was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 93, which was hijacked during the 9/11 attacks.

Las Positas College started off as a site for another digital commemorative ceremony, but it received a “thunderous” group of motorcycle guests. Following direction from an outdated 9/11 memo that had recently recirculated online, the American Legion Riders (aka “Thunderous Tens”) arrived to pay their respects only to realize the event was intended to be virtual. But with singer Aoejandra Quezda Sermeno ready to sing the national anthem, the motorcycle riders stood to salute while standing apart, and the misunderstanding became a photo opportunity.

It is heartwarming to see our community find creative ways to honor those who died on Sept. 11.