More than 600 people filled St. Joseph Cathedral Basilica in San Jose on Sunday, then marched to Fire Station No. 1 to mark 15 years since the terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
"I had friends in New York who died in that," San Jose resident Andy Howland said. "It’s still hard to deal with, but I’m coping with it."
Faith Bridges, of San Jose, said her mother and much of her family are from New York. "I came to pay my respects," she said.
More than a hundred of those who showed up at Sunday's ceremony were first responders. Like other 9/11 remembrances across the Bay Area and nationwide, the more than 3,000 people who died in the attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and on Flight 93 that crashed in western Pennsylvania were remembered. Among those honored were hundreds of first responders who sacrificed their lives, including 343 New York City firefighters.
"Since that day, some have forgotten what first responders gave on that day," said San Jose Fire Chief Curtis Jacobson.
San Jose resident Lisa Silver said she remembers when she heard the news. "It’s still a very emotional moment," she said.
The day also marks 15 years since a new kind of war began - the war on terrorism.
"In the days after 9/11, we were united," San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo said. "That is a lesson for us today."
Bridges agreed. "I think we could be more united now, but as a country, we’re better," she said.