Navy veteran saluting 12 hours to honor victims, first responders on 9/11

A Navy veteran is spending the 17th anniversary of September 11th saluting Michigan drivers as a tribute to the victims and first responders of 9/11.

John Heidenreich set up his demonstration at the intersection of Telegraph and Eureka roads in Taylor first thing Tuesday morning, the 17th anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

"I have been saluting on Veterans Day at the intersection of Telegraph and Eureka for the past three years," he said. "Every year, I try to stay out longer and longer. Last year, I was able to stay out for six hours and that was my record."

This is Heidenreich's first attempt to salute for 12 hours. He first did it for one hour, then three hours the next year, and then six last year. He hopes to go 12 hours, from sun up to sun down, on Tuesday.

Heidenreich started doing the marathon saluting sessions after seeing a video on Facebook of a young boy completing a similar showing on the 70th anniversary of D-Day.

"Lots of people honk or salute back from their vehicles," he said. "A few people park and walk over to shake my hand."

Heidenreich is surrounded by 5-foot tall paintings of the Twin Towers, painted by Wyandotte artist Stephen Burkett.