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The College commemorates 9/11

By Jen Freed
On September 13, 2012

 

 We remember. Eleven years later and the devastating crash of the World Trade Center remains imprinted in our minds. On Tues. Sept. 11th, students, faculty, and staff gathered on the front lawn to do just that - remember. President Helm read during the ceremony, opening with a psalm, mourning and remembering the loss of all who perished in the 2001 tragedy. The ceremony took place in the Wescoe Garden, where a number of students supported the company of Dean Huber and Dean Green.

Chaplain Callista Isabelle lead the ceremony, setting the tone for the service, impacting all walks of life on the College's campus. Alongside President Helm and the Chaplain, Vice President of Development and Alumni Relations, Rebekkah Brown, read of three specific alumni who unfortunately passed away in the tragedy. Brown spoke of Davin Peterson, class of 1998, who was 6 foot 6 and wore size 16 shoes.  He loved to travel, to play practical jokes, and to tease.  He was just 25 years old, and a trader at Cantor Fitzgerald when he died at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. He was a member of the Henry Melchior Muhlenberg Society, and the Davin Peterson '98 Scholarship was set up in his memory. Phil Parker, class of 1969, was born in Canada. His family moved to the States in the early 1950s and, in 1965 he came to Muhlenberg.  Though his main office was in Philadelphia, on September 11th, 2001 he decided to work out of his office on the 99th floor of the South Tower. He is survived by his wife and daughter, Joan and Stephanie Parker, and he was an annual supporter of Muhlenberg College. Alan Merdinger, class of 1992, met his future wife Barbara during a spring break visit to Florida. They had a daughter, Jill, whom Alan taught to swim and throw a softball. He was an accountant at Cantor Fitzgerald, and died on the 102nd floor of the World Trade Center. After graduation, Craig Lilore, a member of the class of 1994 married and bought a falling-down house in Lyndhurst, N.J.  It took him two years to fix it up - doing most of the work himself.  A stock trader at Cantor Fitzgerald, he was on the 104th floor of the North Tower when the first plane hit.  His son Joseph was only four months old at the time.

After speaking about the alum who perished in the destruction, many students and faculty placed rocks on the fountain to commemorate those who passed away. Each year, the College celebrates the lives of alumni who have impacted the school in some way. As solemn as the ceremony and commemoration was, the 9/11 service spoke to all who attended, and allowed both students and faculty to take a moment to recognize and remember.


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