Remembering 9/11: Event honoring first responders to feature patriotic program, musical performance

A field of American flags presented by American Legion Post 90 is on display at the Dixie Center St. George, St. George, Utah, June 14, 2018 | Fiel photo by Hollie Stark, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The City of St. George, American Legion Post 90 and the St. George Exchange Club are inviting the public to attend a free event honoring first responders and their families on the anniversary of 9/11.

At the event, “Remembering 9/11: Honoring First Responders and Their Families,” selected community members will speak and a youth choir will perform to honor the sacrifices made Sept. 11, 2001 — and to recognize current first responders throughout Washington County. Prizes will be given away to first responders and their family members every 15 minutes.

“The terrorist attacks of 9/11 occurred nearly two decades ago. We fear some people have started to forget,” Marti Bigbie, Utah state commander of the American Legion as well as the local Post 90 commander, said in a news release. “With this event, we want to recall the sacrifices of those who rushed into harm’s way without a second thought, and to recognize first responders from throughout Washington County who would not hesitate to do the same.”

The calmness of a late-summer morning was shattered 19 years ago when airplanes slammed into the World Trade Center towers and Pentagon. Nearly 3,000 were killed in the coordinated terrorist attacks, including 412 first responders. The death toll would have likely been much higher if not for the first responders who evacuated the towers before their collapse.

“We sometimes take for granted our police officers, firefighters and paramedics who must summon incredible amounts of courage in certain situations,” St. George Mayor Jon Pike, who is scheduled to speak at the event, said in the release. “We should always take the opportunity to tell them ‘thank you for serving our community and making it safer for everyone.’”

Other speakers include Bigbie, City Councilwoman Dannielle Larkin and Jamie Bahlmann, the wife of a first responder.

Southern Utah resident Jeff McKenna, author of the newly published novel, “Saving Dr. Warren — A True Patriot,” will be present selling autographed copies of his book as a fundraiser for American Legion Post 90’s programs promoting patriotism. Through adventures, the reader learns about Sept. 11, World War II and the American Revolution.

“It’s a powerful tool to help young Americans learn what it means to love their country and those who serve it,” McKenna said.

The event will take place Sept. 11 at Historic Town Square from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2020, all rights reserved.

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