TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — On this day 22 years ago, nearly 3,000 people lost their lives in the 9/11 terrorist attacks across New York City, Pennsylvania, and Washington D.C. It’s the deadliest attack on U.S. soil.

People across the nation commemorate this unforgettable day that forever changed the world. Each year, there are several ceremonies and events people host to honor the lives lost and sacrifices made on 9/11.

Magnolia Chapel Funeral Home in Tuscaloosa annually hosts a lunch-in to honor first responders. General manager Danah Minges said there were many first responders on 9/11 who selflessly paid the ultimate sacrifice for others, and they will never forget their bravery alongside the service all first responders provide daily.

“This day means that we stand together,” said Minges.

Senator Katie Britt said she vividly remembers the emotion of that day. She was just a sophomore in a morning lecture hall at the University of Alabama.

Like many others left to stand by and watch, she said she remembers feeling uncertainty and concern about what was next not only for our community but for our nation.

Coming out of that day, Senator Britt said she did find hope in our nation’s unity.

“I also remember the pride that we felt to be Americans. That we knew we lived in the greatest nation in the world, and that that nation and the freedoms and liberties we have here, the opportunity that we have here, that that was worth fighting for and that was worth preserving.”

Senator Britt says 9/11 serves as a reminder even today that the opportunity we have here in America is worth preserving and fighting for.

She added that she’s disheartened to see what’s unfolded after the withdraw from Afghanistan, saying there is no doubt we are not as safe and secure as we should be.

“We have got to have someone who understands how to actually achieve peace,” said Senator Britt. “That you do that through strength, and that every one of these decisions matters because when you go back and you think about September 11, none of us want to be there again. And so, we need real leaders who understand that, understand the pride in this nation, will get back to a military that is focused on readiness, capability, and preserving that strength and get this political ideology out. Let’s get back to business. Let’s be the United States of America.”