Service personnel remember comrades

Published 5:00 am Friday, September 21, 2001

Emergency service personnel, their families and others gatheredin front of the Lincoln County Government Complex Thursday night tohonor emergency workers in New York City.

“Of the 6,000 (reported missing at the World Trade Center), over330 were emergency service workers,” Clifford Galey, Lincoln CountyFire Coordinator, told the group of more than 100.

Many of the Lincoln County emergency workers have been greatlyaffected by the loss of so many “brothers and sisters” in theemergency field.

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“We face danger every time we’re called out, but this put awhole different perspective on the job,” said Jerry Boyd of theRuth Volunteer Fire Department.

Galey spoke of the willingness local emergency personnel have todo “what it takes” to assist others in their time of need.

“You’re the people that make all this work and who people dependon,” he said. “Keep up the good work.”

Most of the firefighters, law enforcement officers and EMTspresent last night said that while they couldn’t physically helpthose affected by the terrorist attacks, they are trying to help inother ways.

“My prayers go out to the victims and their families,” RobbieDouglas, a Heuck’s Retreat Volunteer firefighter, said.

Jim Craig, director of Mississippi’s Emergency Medical Services,talked of how the families need prayers and comfort during thisdifficult time.

From the EMT Prayer, he read: “If in my duty I should fall, helpmy family to hold their heads high.”

During the candlelight prayer service, a hush came over thecrowd as they listened to others read the prayers of firefightersand law enforcement officers.

Sudie Palomarez, a Lincoln County Sheriff’s Deputy, read thePeacekeeper’s Prayer, which mentions having strength, wisdom,patience and protection while serving the public.

The Firefighters Prayer, read by Cindy Galey, asks for strengthto save others’ lives.

America is not alone in this time of grief, the Rev. PatrickNoonan said, adding that many other countries and their prayers arewith Americans.

“As we walk through the dark valley during these days, You arewith us,” he prayed.

The Rev. Billy Joe Deere expressed to the crowd how important itwas for the nation to come together at this time and put aside anydifferences.

Members of the local fire departments, law enforcement agenciesand medical facilities did not leave immediately after the serviceended. They stayed and joined together in conversation.