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May 19, 2011 - Honoring Those Who Serve and Protect Our Country

What: 9/11 Freedom Rally Dinner

Where: El Jebel Event Center

When: Thursday, May 19, 2011

Time: 6 p.m.

Beneficiary: 9/11 Freedom Rally

Host(s): The Member Organizations of the 9/11 Freedom Rally

EMCEE: Tony Kovaleski, award winning investigative reporter, KMGH-7, Denver Channel

Founders: JJ Margiotta

Welcome: Randy Blauvelt

Speaker: Major General H. Michael Edwards, Adjutant General for Colorado, Thomas Von Essen, 30th Commissioner of the Fire Department of New York City

Catering: El Jebel Event Center

Music: Malley Swing Band

Sponsors: Statewide Wholesale, Inc., White Roofing, Horan and McConaty, El Jebel Event Center

Event Coordinator: Michelle Mallin

Planning Committee: Kathy Goldstein, Kathy Bedwell, Dustin Mahoney, Josh Cooley

Board of Directors: Bob Clements, JJ Margiotta, Pat Valdez, Paul Sojourner, Ray Hoskinson

Steering Committee: JJ Margiotta, Ray Hoskinson, Bob Clements, Paul Sojourner, Don Marsh, Pat Valdez, Michelle Mallin, Steve Rylant

Blacktie Photos by: Steven Shoppman

 JJ Margiotta, founder of the 9/11 Freedom Rally, left, and Izzy Abbas
JJ Margiotta, founder of the 9/11 Freedom Rally, left, and Izzy Abbas

As we approach the 10-year anniversary of September 11, 2001, there will be many upcoming events to remember those who were lost in the attacks that day and those who have been serving the country this last decade to ensure our safety and freedom.  From those internally working on homeland security to those abroad, we owe a great deal of gratitude to the men and women serving our country.  JJ Margiotta has devoted his time to just that.  He founded the 9/11 Freedom Rally, and on May 19th organized a dinner with the help of many enthusiastic individuals and volunteers to raise money for the big event this fall.

With musical delights from the Malley Swing Band and a series of speakers and presentations, the dinner positively reminded us that although 9/11 is a day that will always be a sad memory for Americans, many are working hard to ensure it does not ever happen again.  The presentation from Major General H Michael Edwards of the Air Force was an eye opening account of that sad day, but still a positive reminder of a better future on the horizon because of the devoted individuals working in the USA and abroad.

After many speeches, an excellent dinner and more swing music, JJ Marigotta’s vision for the 9/11 Freedom rally is evident – “The mission of the 9/11 Freedom Rally, a nonprofit organization, is to reclaim the date of September 11 each year as a time of honoring and helping instead of just mourning.”  Now, 9/11 will be a huge event encompassing a motorcycle ride, 5K walk/run, bicycle tour, and an all-day public festival with cultural activities, concerts, food, vendors and other fun for the whole family.  This event is a good influx of positive energy on a day surrounded by bad memories and the best part is, all of the proceeds of the event go back to organizations supporting the service people of the USA and veterans of wars.  Hats off to everyone involved in this event, they are truly doing a great thing.

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