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September 11, 2001. It was a day that so many of us thought would never end. Once the dust had settled from the burning Twin Towers, the Pentagon and the twisted wreckage that had claimed so many American lives, we were numb.

What had just happened? The memory of the silent skies with absolutely zero planes flying for the next couple days, was an eerie reminder of the horrors of the sucker punch we Americans had just taken. Yet, as quickly as that feeling of desperation arrived, a feeling of solidarity and togetherness swept the country. We were united and though the feeling was brought on by unspeakable horror, many real Americans long for that unity again.

We promised on that date, that we would "Never Forget." And though it's painfully obvious that some have indeed forgotten, the YMCA of Northwest Louisiana will hold an event this Friday to remind us all of just what was taken from us on that date.

This Friday, September 11, 2020, the YMCA of Northwest Louisiana will pay tribute forever to the 2,977 people that lost their lives on 9/11/01. For the third year in a row, the YMCA will host their all day "Commemorative Stair Climb"!

The event is open to members and non-members. In fact, all people of the area are invited to strive to reach a community goal of climbing 1,980 steps, the same number as the World Trade Center.

Eight Stairmasters will be set up in the lobby of the BHP YMCA. Stairmasters can be reserved for a 25 minute time slot beginning at 5:00 am on Friday, September 11th.

“We believe part of our role is to serve as a conscience for our community,” says Gary Lash, CEO of the YMCA of Northwest Louisiana. “It is our responsibility to remind people daily of the importance of wellness and it is our job to provide a place where the community can come together for various important events. Our commemorative stair climb is one of the days of the year when we fulfill our mission most fully.”

Participants who donate $10 or more, or who climb 110 flights of stairs, will receive a commemorative 9/11 pin for their contributions. All funds will go to first responders in Shreveport-Bossier.

For more information contact either of the following:

Jeffrey Goodman, Director of Marketing and Development, YMCA of Northwest Louisiana 323-841-3529 | jgoodman@ymcanwla.org

Gary Lash, CEO, YMCA of Northwest Louisiana 318-674-9622 | glash@ymcanwla.org