With the 20th anniversary of 9/11 on Saturday, many high school football teams will commemorate the anniversary before or during their games Friday night.
Sixteen teams around Ohio will wear camouflage jerseys to honor first responders, military members and those who lost their lives in the attacks 20 years ago. The Ohio Army Reserve National Guard helps schools with military appreciation nights in partnership with the Ohio High School Football Coaches Association through a program called Operation Buckeye Guard.
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“We are honored to help communities pay tribute to the first responders and military members who have served or continue to serve since the attacks on 9/11,” said Maj. Matt France, commander of the Ohio Army National Guard Recruiting and Retention Battalion.
There are 20 sets of the camouflage jerseys available, which were first approved by the Ohio High School Athletic Association in 2019. In central Ohio, Bloom-Carroll and Elgin will wear them Friday night. Franklin Heights was also scheduled to wear the jerseys before its game was canceled.
What other 9/11 tributes are high schools doing?
For schools not wearing the camouflage jerseys, there are a variety of plans in place to honor the anniversary of 9/11, first responders and veterans.
Westerville South and Hilliard Bradley plan to have a moment of silence before the game and a moment of recognition for current and former military members later in the game, and Hilliard Davidson has similar plans. At Grove City, veterans will be recognized.
Whetstone will have a moment of silence before the national anthem.
Delaware Hayes and Worthington Kilbourne will have an announcement of the anniversary and a moment of silence. At Olentangy Liberty, military members and first responders will be honored before the national anthem, and 13 seats will be reserved with American flags to honor the fallen military members in Afghanistan in recent weeks.
The full list of Ohio schools wearing the camouflage jerseys:
- Anthony Wayne
- Franklin Heights
- Seneca East
- Valley View
ThisWeek reporters Frank DiRenna, Michael Rich and Scott Hennen contributed to this story.