9/11 speaker: We are more united than divided

A North Iowa veteran who served as program administrator for the North Central Iowa Chapter of the American Red Cross told a large crowd gathered for a 9/11 memorial service that “we are more united as a country then we are divided.”

Iowa Army National Guard Sergeant First Class Peter Bieber, of Nora Springs, was the guest speaker for the event.  Bieber was awarded a Purple Heart for his service in Operation Iraqi Freedom, but on Tuesday he told about 150 persons about his experience at the Red Cross on the day of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Bieber remarked about the overwhelming generosity of North Iowans in the wake of the attacks.

“Our little Red Cross chapter alone forwarded well over $100,000 to the American Red Cross Liberty Fund. In total, Americans donated over $1.2 billion to the Red Cross, United Way, Salvation Army and so many others. Equally, many of those organizations gave thousands of volunteers who donated priceless hours of their time and talents to serve those in need.”

He thanked all those who took time on Tuesday to attend the service at the fire station, with a piece of steel pulled from the World Trade Center prominently displayed on the corner.  Firemen, paramedics, law enforcement and veterans proudly stood at attention as he delivered the message.

“Days like today is serve as a reminder that the political squabbles the play out on TV, in Washington DC, or our own state capitol are fairly minor compared to the challenges that America is overcoming the past.  In our darkest hours, we continue to prove to the world time and again what we are made of, that the only race that matters is the human race, and the only colors any American should ever be identified by are the red, the white, and the blue. As President Thomas Jefferson once put it, I have never considered a difference of opinion in politics or religion as cause for withdrawing from a friend.”

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