Salina Fire Department Never Forgets

The Salina Fire Department Sunday morning paused to remember, and honor their brother and sister firefighters who gave the ultimate sacrifice 15 years ago.

The event in Salina began at the exact time the first airliner crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City on September 11th, 2001.

Firefighters, and a small group of family, friends, and supporters gathered in front of Salina Fire Station #1 to be a part of the event.

The Salina Fire Department Honor Guard anchored the ceremony, marching out to the flagpole, standing at attention the entire time, and then retiring the colors at the end. In between, several symbolic remembrances were held. Dispatch toned out a memorial, all units at all stations pulled out onto the front pad with emergency lights on for 1 minute, a last alarm of 3 rings, 3 times on a bell was sounded, and there was a moment of silence.

Salina Fire Chief Kevin Royse briefly spoke. He highlighted a timeline of the events of September 11th.

Chief Royse told KSAL News that the simple ceremony was an honorable way to honor the memory and service of those firefighters, and police officers, who gave the ultimate sacrifice 15-years-ago. “343 New York City Firefighters died that day, they left for their shift that morning expecting to perform their service and never made it home,” the chief said.

The event ended with  a prayer, and the honor guard retiring the colors.

The ceremony in Salina was one of many around the country, as Americans remember those killed 15 years ago in the terror attacks. Nearly 3,000 people died when four hijacked airliners crashed into the World Trade Center complex, the Pentagon and a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Commemoration events were also held at Ground Zero in New York, the Pentagon, and at the Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville. President Obama and Defense Secretary Ash Carter spoke at the Pentagon ceremony.

(click photos to enlarge)