As the events that unfolded 15 years ago are remembered, reflection of that tragic day is talked about across the nation. The lives of the American people protecting this nation were thrown into an uncertain storm that would call upon brave soldiers to fight for freedom.
Then active duty solider, Lieutenant Colonel Jeremiah Klomp, says that this day is one he will never forget.
“I was in the air force and we were doing a missile test launch, and of course at that time, when something happens like 9/11, all test and anything non-mission related shuts down immediately. And so we shut down the missile Shiloh and made our way back to the base that I was stationed at,” said Klomp.
At 8:45 in the morning, Klomp says his perspective on life changed forever.
“I remember exactly where I was, just like my parents know exactly where they were when J.F.K was shot,” said Klomp. “We, who were active duty, were of course, on high alert; if something like that could happen in NYC, it could happen anywhere.”
After 9/11, everything changed in Klomp’s world. Daily tasks, like entering a military base in the U.S., became extremely agonizing.
“What used to take 10 minutes to enter a military base, but now took up to three hours. A simple ID check was replaced by thorough vehicle searches with bomb-sniffing dogs and many other security measures,” said Klomp. “Everyone, from the pilots to the maintenance officers to the chefs in the dining hall, took his or her job much more seriously, and patriotism was at an all-time high.”
For the safety of the United States, Klomp strives to teach his cadets what it means to serve the country and to never forget the attacks by the Islamic terrorist group 15 years ago.
“I think that for most of us, or even for all of us, it’s important that we don’t forget. That we don’t forget what happened on that day, we don’t forget the sacrifices and the service provided by so many military members, on that day, and from now into the future,” said Klomp.
Remembering these events hits home for Klomp and “is very personal and brings back a lot of emotions.”
Klomp entered the Air Force in 1998 after earning his bachelor’s degree in Biology from the United States Air Force Academy.