WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio —

On Patriot Day, our Nation continues to honor, recognize and remember the nearly 3,000 people who lost their lives 17 years ago during the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001.

This day, which many refer to as simply “9-11,” the American flag is flown at half-staff at homes, the White House, and all U.S. government buildings and establishments at home and abroad. A moment of silence begins at 8:46 a.m. EDT, the time the first plane struck the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Separate observances are often held at the Pentagon and near the site of the National Park Service’s Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania.

President Bush designated Sept. 11 as Patriot Day, on Dec. 18, 2001. In 2009, Congress designated Sept. 11 as a National Day of Service and Remembrance. Patriot Day is different from Patriot’s Day, which is a state holiday in April recognizing the first battles of the American Revolutionary War.

The shared experience of Sept.11. 2001 continues to link our Nation and its people together as Americans. As a National Day of Service, individuals are encouraged to spend the day assisting or providing service to our fellow Americans. As a National Day of Remembrance, Americans are encouraged to remember the many people who perished on that fateful day; the many others who accepted the call to respond in some positive fashion to the tragic events of 9/11; and the many citizens who reaffirmed their status as Americans living in the United States of America.