In the decade after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, many communities that lost residents held ceremonies of remembrance each Sept. 11.
Last year, on the 10-year anniversary of 9-11, heartfelt services were held in many places.
This year, however, was a bit different, the New York Times notes. The ceremonies are changing and some communities held simpler, quieter remembrances than in years past.
Even the New York City commemoration was more low-key than in the past. There were no politicians speaking or reading; bagpipers and a youth choir provided music.
The National Cathedral in Washington held its regularly scheduled service, with special prayers remembering 9-11 and its victims. A cathedral spokesman told the Times that we all felt that it was important still to commemorate it, but to do so in perhaps a less overt, a less somber way to do so maturely and look forward.
Nearly 700 of the victims were residents of New Jersey, whose communities have held ceremonies each year. Yet at least two of the towns scaled back a bit this year, the Times reported. Montclair, which lost nine people, held a smaller ceremony than in previous years, with a bagpiper and the reading of names. Glen Rock, which counts 11 victims, declared Tuesday a day of remembrance for personal reflection.
Both communities considered carefully and consulted residents before making their decisions.
Even communities that continue to offer public events may eventually switch to a more personal remembrance.
It is important to remember those who died in the tragedy and never to forget what happened. But the country is moving on, and the annual events will reflect that.