BEATRICE – Beatrice citizens gathered to hear a first-responder perspective on the 20th anniversary of the nine-eleven attacks, that started a war against terror.
The Veterans Memorial Park was the scene of a ceremony Saturday morning, attended by veterans, law officers and firefighters. The Chief of Beatrice Fire and Rescue gave the address.
"As the 20th anniversary of one of the darkest days of the United States is upon us, it is also time to reflect on the greatest nation in the world, which is occupied by the greatest people on earth. The United States is that shining beacon on top of the hill. For those who occupy the firehouses, police stations, military bases, schools, grocery stores, village halls...they should all be proud of the society that we live in, and the role that we play in making the United States great. We honor the sacrifices of those who have gone before us...to never forget...knowing that when we face that moment to do the right thing, that we shall prove our worth."
Beatrice Fire and Rescue Chief Brian Daake recalled the shocked expressions of his department members the day the twin towers in New York City were brought down…..the attack on the Pentagon….and the crash of Flight 93 in Pennsylvania.
Daake said although he did not personally know firefighters, police and rescue personnel that rushed to the twin towers that day….all have something in common….a brotherhood.
"While it it a most tragic day in our history, it also showed what true Americanism really is. There were many heroes that day...those who stepped up and did things nobody expected them to do. I can only imagine what it must feel like to be a New York City Firefighter or Police Officer, looking up at the burning towers, knowing that this could be your last act, on earth. But, you still go in with your brothers climbing the stairs with your gear on, your equipment...encouraging those who were able to self-rescue, to do so. You continue to climb the stairs with your crew to help those who were never able to help themselves. They went in, not to be heroes....but because they were there to serve their community and help those they could rescue."
The nine-eleven ceremony was organized by Gage County Veterans Office, Service Officer Scott Bates, the Beatrice Area Chamber of Commerce and led by U.S. Marine Corps Veteran Tim Fralin….a Beatrice City Councilman. Fralin urged people that with hatred spread throughout everywhere…its’ time to pull together for each other.
"Let's get back to where we were twenty years ago. This is a great community. We've got the greatest people on earth, here in this community. Lets all bond together, to be one."
Pastor Suzanne How speaking on the day of remembrance, blessed firefighters, police officers and U.S. military members “who run toward danger in order to provide safety and security for the innocent and the vulnerable.”