‘Promised to never forget’: Middletown, which lost 37 residents on 9/11, holds special ceremony

Friday marked 19 years since the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

News 12 Staff

Sep 11, 2020, 2:50 PM

Updated 1,319 days ago


Friday marked 19 years since the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.
Thirty-seven Middletown residents died in the attacks, more than any other town in New Jersey. Each of their names was read by Mayor Tony Perry in a special ceremony at the Middletown World Trade Center Memorial Garden Friday morning. Middletown police, for the first time, also organized a run to honor those lost
“They’re still with us,” says MaryAnn Richardelli, who lost her friend, Anna Laverty, on 9/11. “They’re still here. It’s just still raw, all of it is still very trying.”
Middletown normally marks the tragic day with a quiet candlelit evening vigil and reads the names only every five years, but Mayor Perry was motivated to add the 19 anniversary observance after both the traditional New York City readings were canceled.
"This community, this town and leaders back in 2001 promised to never forget, and I'm not going to let that happen on my watch,” says Mayor Perry.
Police officers also took part this year, honoring those lost with a run from the Middletown memorial to the one in Leonardo.
“Everybody just united behind this and said this is the cause to do it for and especially with coronavirus limiting what was going on we wanted to be out there and showing the public, we still remember,” says Middletown PBA President Mike Reuter.
Police were also remembering their fallen brother, Detective Lt. Joseph Capriotti, who passed away on June 6, 2019, after a long battle with cancer, which was attributed to his work at the World Trade Center site in the days following the attack.
The memorial gardens opened in 2003, and in its creative and heartfelt way, it very clearly and specifically remembers all 37 of its residents who were killed 19 years ago in the terror attacks.
Mayor Perry says next year, a fountain will be added as part of the 20-year anniversary.

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