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Nineteen years ago, our world and our country changed forever when a group of terrorists killed and injured thousands of American citizens in what would become the deadliest terrorist attack in American history. The attacks of September 11, 2001 not only left us mourning those we lost, but also led us to question our sense of national security.
Nearly two decades later, we still bear the marks of suffering, but through the dust and ashes of tragedy, we emerged stronger as a country. As we continue to remember that harrowing day, we can take comfort knowing the Department of Homeland Security was created to deter such atrocities from happening again. As DHS employees, each of you are vital to this mission, and I am grateful for your steadfast service to the American people.
We are especially grateful for the sacrifices that first responders, law enforcement, and medical workers made 19 years ago and continue to make today as we confront new and evolving threats. Our country will always owe them a debt of gratitude.
Today, as we observe, reflect, and remember the events of September 11th, let us also remember the strength, solidarity, and hope we have gained over nearly two decades.
As DHS employees, we must use these virtues as we continue to fulfill our duty to protect the Homeland.
We are one team. One mission. One DHS.
Chad F. Wolf
Acting Secretary of Homeland Security
With honor and integrity, we will safeguard the American people, our homeland, and our values.