In observance of 9/11, the fine arts department of Dollarway High School hosted a ceremony to honor Nehamon Lyons IV, a 1989 Dollarway graduate, who died at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001.
After graduating from Dollarway, Lyons moved to Mobile, Alabama, and attended the University of South Alabama, for three years pursuing a degree in medicine, while working to pay for his education, according to a news release.
Lyons enlisted in the United States Navy in 1997 and his first assignment was on the U.S.S. Gettysburg. He was transferred to the Pentagon in January 2001 and was killed on Sept. 11 while serving at the Pentagon as Operations Specialist 2nd Class, for the Navy Command Support Team.
Lyons was 30 years old and received the Purple Heart, Navy and Marine Corps Commendations Medal posthumously, according to a news release.
During the Dollarway ceremony Tuesday, several city officials, members of the U.S. Armed Forces, community members and Class of 1989 attended to show their support.
Army National Guard, Sgt. First Class Tara Tyler-Woods served as mistress of ceremonies and also as a representative of the Class of 1989.
Dollarway Superintendent Barbara Warren recalled that on that “hard day” she was serving as a first year principal at Stuttgart Junior High School and in that moment she knew that life would never be the same for the country.
Pine Bluff Mayor Shirley Washington encouraged the student body, emphasizing the talent of Dollarway students. She also made a special presentation on behalf of the city of Pine Bluff to DHS staff and administration in recognition of Lyons.
The guest speaker was Lee McFadden, district veteran service officer and former Navy crash and structural firefighter.
“He delivered a chronological account of Lyons’ life and all that he accomplished by 30 years of age, and that his service was a great reflection on our school, city and community,” according to the release.
“Mr. McFadden spoke glowingly about Lyon’s being selected to work at the Pentagon, and how only the best of the best were chosen for such an assignment,”
Sophomore Trevion West offered a song tribute entitled, “Hero,” and senior Donteria Willis presented a poem entitled, “We’re Still Standing.”
After the assembly, the student body and participants met at the flagpole for a balloon release, sponsored by the Class of 1989 while the DHS band played a special tribute.
Afterwards, the library hosted several community members to view poster displays created by students that honor the lives of the fallen.
“We will never forget this brave young man, who chose to serve his country and died doing just that,” said a member of the school staff.
This event was coordinated by Linda Simmons, English teacher and chair of the fine arts department at Dollarway High School.