Veterans Mark 9/11 At Milwaukee Ceremony

Alan Lewis Joined U.S. Army Just Months Before Attacks

Chuck Quirmbach/WPR

Ceremonies on Friday marking the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, also trigger memories for some Wisconsinites later sent to war.

Milwaukeean Alan Lewis said he joined the U.S. Army just a couple of months before Sept. 11. He recalled being in basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia, and hearing of the terrorist attacks.

“And from that day forward, it wasn’t just training for a general sense of defense of this country, it was training with a purpose, it was training to know that we had an enemy to fight,” said Lewis. “And little did I know that things would get real really quick.”

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The Army eventually sent Lewis to Iraq. Lewis said that on Sept. 11, he not only remembers the Americans who died in New York, Pennsylvania and at the Pentagon, but his fellow soldiers later killed in the war.

Lewis laid a memorial wreath at a 9/11 ceremony in Milwaukee on Friday.