By Joel Waldman

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – A new generation of Americans is learning the awful truth about what happened on 9/11/2001.

An important lesson for South Florida high schoolers, all born after the darkest day in American history.

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“I’m so grateful we get to learn about this history in our classroom and just know what these people went through even though I wasn’t alive at this time,” said Selin Rabelo of American High School.

9/11 offered a brutal lesson about the dark side of humanity, a day when foreign terrorists murdered nearly three thousand innocent victims on American soil.

“Well, I’m shocked, like very shocked that all these things had to happen and that people really didn’t’ survive there,” said Jairo Leon, a 5th-grade student.

An understandably difficult notion for younger students at Panther Run Elementary to wrap their heads around, but, still, a lesson that cannot afford to be lost.

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“A lot of them don’t even believe that it happened. Over and over again they’ll say, ‘this is true? It really happened?’ And I say, “Yes,” said Amy Sakowitz.

Others who said yes, too, graduate students at the University of Miami and veterans, who decided to enlist in the service after watching the horrors of 9/11 unfold on live TV as young boys.

“I did know at a young age that kind of installed the seed in me to know that one day I want to serve. And eventually, I raised my right hand and decided to join.”

So did Air Force veteran Frank Triano, whose hope for this sad day of remembrance, is to once again unite all Americans.

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“I’m hoping even more in these trying times, with COVID and the withdrawal of Afghanistan, we can come together even more.”