Ceremonies paying tribute to the Americans who lost their lives during the 9/11 attacks are being held nationwide today. In the Chester County town of Ft. Lawn, a service will be held at the community center.
Program organizer Richard Hulse conducted the first remembrance in the town in 2002 and has held it each year since. Hulse is a lieutenant and safety officer for the Fort Lawn Volunteer Fire Department. Before retiring in Chester County just before the 9/11 attacks, the 68-year-old spent 32 years as a Long Island, New York volunteer fireman. Three of his close friends were among the 343 fire fighters killed during the attacks that day.
It was just indescribable. Words can’t describe it. It was terrible. A few weeks later I saw the list of those who were lost and I saw the three names of my friends who were killed.
The Saturday night service begins at 7:30 and will feature a bagpiper.
Hulse says the ceremony is always an emotional experience, because the memories of the event are emotional, even nine years after the event.
Hulse says his message to the public is that fire fighters are here to serve and put themselves in harm’s way, and should be remembered accordingly. Hulse says during the tribute area fire, police and EMS personnel will be thanked for their service.
Just remember that we are here to protect you. Sometimes we lose our lives doing it. It’s a job we enjoy and we train for it but sometimes it gets tragic. Most of the speaking during the ceremony I’ll do myself. But I’ll have different emergency personnel read a little poem about their departments.
A 9/11 ceremony will be in held Columbia on Saturday, beginning at 10:30am at Hyatt Park, across from the North Main Plaza. During the ceremony military personnel, law enforcement and local first responders will be honored.