- Associated Press - Thursday, September 11, 2014

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - Flags flew at half-staff and ceremonies were held Thursday cross Illinois to commemorate the thirteenth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

In Peoria, Bradley University students arrived on campus to the sight of 3,000 flags the College Republicans placed outside Bradley Hall in honor of the victims of the attacks. In the Chicago suburb of Palatine, a flight attendant who lost friends in the attacks attended a ceremony at the Palatine Firefighters memorial.

Gov. Pat Quinn unveiled a “Portraits of a Soldier” exhibit at the University of Illinois-Chicago campus, his office said. His challenger in the governor’s race, GOP candidate Bruce Rauner, was to attend a ceremony in the morning at Lockport City Hall, his campaign said.

The Champaign Fire Dept. Local 1260 Honor Guard gathered at the Police and Fire Memorial at West Side Park to mark the day when hijacked airliners slammed into New York’s World Trade Center towers and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C.

In Bethalto, Civic Memorial High School physical education teacher Angie Parish told her students to reach out to survivors of the attacks. At least one family responded, and a student gave a speech about it during a memorial service. Students placed flags across the school’s football field for each of the 2,977 victims.

During a prayer service outside the Quincy City Council chambers, Police Chief Rob Copley said like before the attacks, the U.S. has a false sense of security. He added the anniversary is a reminder to be vigilant.

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