A Look Back: Tragedy brings campus and nation together
A version of the following article originally appeared in the spring 2002 issue of Austin Peay: The Publication for Alumni and Friends of Austin Peay State University
The American flag in front of Browning flew at half-staff for all who lost their lives as a result of the terrorist attacks Sept. 11. Like the rest of the nation, the Austin Peay family felt a need to come together—to grieve, remember, pray. To hug friends, give blood, give thanks. On Sept. 12, faculty, staff and students joined together to celebrate the spirit and freedoms of America and to honor the men and women in the military who would be called to fight the war on terrorism. Dr. Allen Henderson, chair of the music department, sang acapella as ROTC cadets and others in the audience listened somberly to the newly significant words “American the Beautiful.”
A few days later, some students held a prayer service around the flag, while others organized a community-wide drive to collect much-needed items for rescue workers in New York and Washington D.C. Within days, a truck departed campus, packed with bottled water, latex gloves, paper products, etc. Over the months since Sept. 11, APSU faculty, who are experts on Islam, the Middle East, etc., have given many talks and been interviewed by print and broadcast media.
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