In a ceremony held this morning at the main fire hall in St. Thomas, several dozen firefighters, members of the police service and EMS gathered for a 9-11 memorial service and to recognize the efforts of the people “willing to step up and answer the call to action when it is needed.”
Hosted by the St. Thomas Professional Firefighters’ Association, the ceremony honoured the more than 400 firefighters and law enforcement officers who died in the World Trade Center and on the ground in New York City.
It was also an opportunity for elected officials to pay tribute to the city’s first responders.
“Thank you so much for all of the work you do each and every day to keep us safe,” observed Elgin-Middlesex-London MP Karen Vecchio.
On behalf of EML MPP Jeff Yurek, who was unable to attend the ceremony due to commitments in Toronto, Delany Leitch noted “Eighteen years later, it is still an unimaginable tragedy and absolutely underscores how lucky communities across the world are to have people willing to step up and answer the call to action when it is needed.”
St. Thomas Mayor Joe Preston thanked Warren Scott, president of the firefighters’ association “for what you are doing to keep us remembering what happened 18 years ago today. I realized in the car on the way here, we now have young adults who weren’t alive when 9-11 happened.
“We have to continue to tell the story of what first responders did that day,” continued Preston, “and what first responders continue to do. As the mayor of St. Thomas, I can be nothing but thankful for the work the men and women of the first responding forces do every day.
“And think of what a tragic day that was for the City of New York. Thank you for allowing us to come and be part of the memorial today.”
In closing out the memorial ceremony, Scott took time to “express our gratitude to our EMS and police brothers and sisters for their partnership and support as we all work together to keep our community safe.
“For the last 18 years, our three services have gathered to remember September 11. I am proud we have always done so together. It is a testament to the outstanding working relationship we enjoy.
“For all of you on duty today, stay safe.”
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