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Remembering 9/11 and Mary Lou Hague

Published: Sep. 10, 2021 at 6:16 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Friday afternoon, Parkersburg High School held a ceremony to remember the lives lost on one day 20 years ago Saturday-and to reflect on what happened in the days that followed.

“As we try to move forward with loss, as we did on that day,” said PHS Principal Kenny DeMoss, “it helps keep things in perspective.”

And the mother of one of the victims-a PHS graduate-says we need to keep in perspective all of the 2,980 people we lost in attacks at three U.S. locations: that, for what turned out to be a relative moment in time, brought the nation together.

“There was no one taking a knee,” Liza Adams recalled. “There was no one protesting, no one wanting to get rid of the flag or change the words to ‘God Bless America’.”

Adams has spoken to us on two anniversaries of 9/11 about her daughter, a person who she says lived her sadly-shortened life to the fullest.

Mary Lou Hague’s job in the financial center of New York put her in contact with celebrities like Michael Jordan. And like many of us, Mary Lou had a dream of being a success.

“She loved traveling, she loved sports of all kinds,” Liza Adams told us in 2002. “She wanted to be on Wall Street and she wanted to be a success; she had a dream and she attained her dream. But at the same time she was becoming a success, she was a good person.”

Mary Lou is still remembered at PHS, where she was a member of the school’s Red Wings, who performed at Friday’s ceremony.

It was attended by Parkersburg Mayor Tom Joyce.

Speaking to students, none of whom were born yet when the 9/11 attacks happened, Joyce said: ”I really hope that you kids get the opportunity to know people who lived their life the way Mary Lou did.”

And while she wants us to remember the other victims of that day’s attacks-as well as the more recent victims of COVID-19-Liza Adams still hasn’t forgotten her daughter.

“I think I would tell her,” she said in 2011, “just as I tell her every day, how proud of her I am, how brave she was, I’m sure, what a hero she is, and how much I love her, how much I miss her.”

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