GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – For the 6th year, dozens of Bob Jones University students have set up a large display of American flags outside the school’s entrance in honor of those who lost their lives on September 11th, 2001.
The display, outside the school’s entrance on Wade Hampton Blvd, has 2,977 flags.
“It’s a flag for every victim of 9-11, that is represented out there,” says BJU Women’s Student Body President Katarina Shafer. “We just take some time to reflect before putting them up.”
Along with the flag display, the school has a replica of the famous cross at Ground Zero, which is now in the National September 11th Memorial Museum in New York City.
“It’s important not only to have these displays, but to tell our stories and remind these younger generations that Americans can unite,” says BJU Men’s Student Body President Jeriel Ontoy.
Inside the school’s Welcome Center, there’s a 40 pound steel girder that was saved from the remains of the North Tower of the World Trade Center.
“Seeing this here on campus definitely brings it down to earth that wow, lives actually were lost and there were heroes,” Ontoy says. “There was a unity that I feel like America is really missing nowadays, and so this is a great visual reminder that we as Americans can unify.”
Though many of these students were just toddlers at the time of the tragedy, he says it’s an important tradition and hopes it continues for years to come.
“The incoming class was born in 2001, so they have absolutely no recollection of the event,” Ontoy explains. “And so members of my generation, while we may not be able to truthfully say we remember, we can affirm that we will never forget.”
The flags will be on display through Thursday, September 12th at the Wade Hampton entrance of Bob Jones University.
The steel girder from the North Tower is on display now at the BJU Welcome Center from 7:30 am to 7 pm.
After September 12th, it will move to the lobby of the Rodeheaver Auditorium and will be on display there all year long.