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Troy Smith, president of The Jacksonville Bar Association
Jax Daily Record Monday, Sep. 1, 201412:00 PM EST

Bar Bulletin: Patriot Day: A day to honor, remember the victims of Sept. 11

by: Troy Smith

Where were you on Sept. 11, 2001?

For me that day is clear as crystal. I had been employed at Rogers Towers for about five years and was enjoying a nice vacation with friends in Dominical on the southwest coast of Costa Rica.

That morning we all got up at 6 a.m. and left our five-colones-per-night accommodations to make an early morning surf session. We came in for breakfast around 10 a.m. but very few rooms in Costa Rica had television at that time.

We went down to the local bar/restaurant owned by a Floridian, where we had dinner the night before. The restaurant was set up like a U.S. sports bar with tons of TVs and a satellite dish feed. When we walked up for breakfast, everyone was glued to the TVs.

Every TV had different coverage of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York burning. Replays of the planes hitting the buildings played over and over. People were jumping out of the buildings trying to escape the flames.

To everyone’s shock and surprise, the buildings collapsed in the heart of New York City and thousands of innocent men, women and children perished. Another plane hit the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. The final plane, likely headed for the White House, was brought down by heroic passengers in fields outside of Shanksville, Pa.

The people injured and killed that day were families and friends, service members and first responders. The tragedy of their loss will never be forgotten.

The U.S. House of Representatives Joint Resolution 71 was approved 407-0 on Oct. 25, 2001, requesting the president designate Sept. 11 of each year as Patriot Day. President George W. Bush signed the resolution into law Dec. 18, 2001.

On Sept. 4, 2002, President Bush used his authority, created by this resolution, and proclaimed Sept. 11, 2002, as the first Patriot Day. As a result, in our country, Sept. 11 is known as Patriot Day and the National Day of Service and Remembrance.

As we come upon the 13th anniversary of the attack, we will remember and honor those who suffered at our next monthly luncheon Sept. 11. The luncheon, at the Omni Hotel Downtown, will feature a keynote presentation from the Honorable Ronald V. Swanson of the 1st District Court of Appeal.

Judge Swanson served in the United States Navy’s Judge Advocate General’s Corps for more than 20 years, retiring as a Navy captain in 1995. He served in numerous assignments, including operations during the first Gulf War. If you have not already done so, please be sure to sign up for this great member luncheon opportunity.

Renew your


This is a reminder to renew your Jacksonville Bar Association membership.

We have worked extremely hard to cut the budget so we would not be forced to raise dues. The membership remains $225 for all of the standard services you are used to experiencing, including certain annual social events, such as the Bench and Bar, the annual meeting and your JBA lunch meetings.

However, for those of you looking to bundle your services, to steal a phrase from Comcast, we also offer an enhanced membership. For an additional $270 you can increase your membership to the full membership.

In addition to all of the same benefits that you have always had with your standard membership, the full membership includes free access to all live CLE events and all social events, as well as your fee for the annual golf tournament.

Please contact the JBA office as soon as possible to renew your membership or visit to sign up online.

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