At 10:28 a.m. -- the time the second tower fell after last year's terrorist attacks -- a cannon boomed Wednesday at Carson High School.
Slowly, a U.S. flag climbed the new 60-foot flag pole in front of the school as a choir sang, "O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave?"
Hundreds of students released red, white and blue balloons into the air and cheered as the balloons disappeared into a near-cloudless sky.
Then the piercing sound of a single trumpet playing "Taps" silenced the crowd as the flag was lowered to half staff.
In a ceremony Mayor Ray Masayko called "quite touching and quite appropriate," Carson High School students and staff members remembered the terrorist attacks on New York City and the Pentagon last year.
"It's a good way for us to remember it and just to keep it with us," said Steve Lubich, 16. "It's something that's probably going to live with everybody for a very long time."
The memorial included a dedication the new flag pole and unveiling of a monument of the Twin Towers at the base of the pole.
Inside the monument are buried time capsules from various classes. A poem written by a student will be engraved on the bench between the towers.
Throughout the morning, the cannon sounded to mark each of the major events from Sept. 11 -- the time each plane crashed and when each tower collapsed.
Students also watched a video with clips from that day.
Alex McAlman, 14, said she watched the footage today with a better understanding and perspective than she had a year ago. But it wasn't any easier.
"I think in a way it's a good thing to remember but it's hard to relive it all over again," she said.
Christine Dahlinger, 14, hopes the replica of the Twin Towers will remind students of the heroism that sprung up during and after the attacks.
"It will help people remember we're Americans," she said. "We should stand together every day, not just when tragedy happens."
Principal Glen Adair said as the only high school in town, a larger flag pole was needed to display the patriotism of students, staff and the community.
"These are times that mark our existence," he told students. "I doubt you will ever forget when the towers of America were attacked by agents of terrorism."
Poem to be engraved on monument of the Twin Towers:
It's times like these, when we look back on our lives
We remember ones that were loved, yet so tragically died.
Times can come and so quickly go
When our lives will end, we do not know.
Freedom and unity will ring true
As we pledge allegiance to the red, white and blue.
With an eagle flying high
Our stars and stripes will never die.
-- by Charity Ricks, junior