Blue Mass Returns Live to Shannon For 20th Anniversary of 9/11
By Amanda Hudson, News Editor
August 12, 2021
SHANNON—The 19th annual Blue Mass will be held in person on Sept. 11, beginning at 6:30 p.m. with a gathering and ceremony at the Wendelin Fire Station flagpole. 
A procession of first responders and Knights of Columbus will then go to St. Wendelin Church, 18 S. Linn St., for the 7 p.m. Blue Mass.
Last year, the event was provided via Facebook.
The Blue Mass honors men and women who serve or have served their communities as first responders — fire fighters, police officers and emergency medical personnel. 
As has been the case since 2002, this Blue Mass event is sponsored by the St. Wendelin Knights of Columbus. 
Father Michael Bolger, pastor, will welcome Chaplin Ellis Boughton of the Shannon Fire Department, and the Knights of Columbus will serve as an honor guard.
The public is invited to the ceremony and Mass, which will also honor those who died and those who served on Sept. 11, 2001. 
This year marks the 20th anniversary of those attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, as well as the downed plane in Shanksville, Pa.
Parades held earlier
Earlier that day, a procession of area first responders will gather just after 9:30 a.m. in Lanark at the junction of Illinois Rtes. 72 and 73. 
They will head north first to Pearl City, then north to join the Lena Fall Festival Parade, which starts at 12 noon. 
The first responders will walk at the end of the parade and plans are for “something special” conducted in front of the Parade Review Stand just west of Illinois Rte. 73 in Lena. 
A trailer of reconstructed pieces from Ground Zero will be part of the display.
On Labor Day, Sept. 6, first responders and Knights will be part of the Shannon Labor Day Parade.
At all of these events, everyone is welcome to come and honor area first responders and those who died 20 years ago in the attack.
Info: Bill Spoerlein, 815-541-9420.
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