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Marines with Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa bow their heads in prayer during a September 11th remembrance ceremony in Nissoria, Italy, Sept. 22, 2015. The local priest offered a prayer as Americans and Nissorians remembered the shared pain of the lives lost that day 14 years ago.

Photo by Cpl. Olivia McDonald

US, Italy remember 9/11

24 Sep 2015 | Cpl. Olivia McDonald The Official United States Marine Corps Public Website

 In September of 2001 tragedy struck America in New York City and rippled throughout the country. While Americans felt the brunt of the pain and loss, people across oceans also shared the burden.

“September 11th was a day that changed the world,” said Armando Glorioso, mayor of Nissoria, while addressing the citizens of the town and U.S. service members present.

Marines and sailors with Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa, participated in a September 11th memorial in Nissoria, Italy, Sept. 22, 2015.

Since 2002 the annual memorial is conducted to commemorate the lives of two Nissorian citizens, Vincenzo Fazio and Salvatore Lopes, who lost their lives that day.

“I believe it is important to remember this tragedy,” Glorioso said. “We must remember that love can conquer all and we can overcome.”

For the last 13 years American service members have been invited by the mayor of Nissoria to attend the memorial that recognizes the global impact that day had.

“The deep sympathy they felt for our nation was not something I had ever realized,” said 1st Lt. John Cabbage, H&S company commander with SPMAGTF-CR-AF. “It was very touching for me because we understand how it impacted our society as Americans, but we don’t always think about the impact on other countries.

Service members from the Army and Air Force also attended the memorial which included a short parade, a wreath-laying and ceremony in the village’s park, and ended with dinner.

“It was great to be invited to be a part of something so close to our hearts and for the people to accept us and want us to be a part of it,” said Cabbage. “To hear in person that they support us and our war on terrorism is pretty special.”

Together the people of Nissoria and Americans are healing by remembering the lives lost that day 14 years ago.

“Commemorating this tragedy strengthens the relationship between the community of Sigonella and the community of Nissoria,” said Glorioso, who hopes to continue the annual commemoration with the Americans.