FULTON, Miss. (WCBI)- This is the fourth year Northeast Mississippi has hosted a 9-11 memorial stair climb. But it is the first year that it has been held at the Davis Events Center on the Campus of Itawamba Community College.
Fulton Fire Chief Brad Beard says it is about bringing everyone together.
“Not only is it important for firefighters to remember September 11 but all Americans need to remember September 11 and would like to pull the United States together closer to like we were on September 12,” said Beard.
Participants walked 1980 steps which coincided with the New York first responders who climbed 110 flights of the World Trade Center towers stairs up and down, in full gear.
“The fire gear is an extra additional sixty pounds or thereabouts when they start. It is to symbolize the New York firefighters that put on their gear that morning to go up to the World Trade Center to save lives.”
Fulton firefighter Bud Davis, who was five years old on 9-11 was honored to be taking part in this memorial stair climb in his hometown.
“It feels pretty good just to do it for all the fallen firefighters from 18 years ago. You know it’s unbelievable to walk all these steps just to realize you know what they were going through and to be in house fires and stuff like that you know, that’s just unbelievable what they went through,” said Davis.
Due to some scheduling conflicts at the Bancorp South Arena Tupelo was not able to host this year’s event. That is when Fulton stepped in. It is one of the few communities that has a facility like the Davis Events Center to hold an event like this.
And members of the Tupelo Fire Department were on hand. Jesse Clock also volunteers for the Shannon Fire Department.
“And I remember 9-11. I remember everything about it. I remember where I was. This is my fourth year to do the stair climb, and it’s always a real humbling experience. I encourage any fireman that’s never done it to come try it,” said Clock.
And Amory firefighter David Johnson also found the experience very humbling.
“I was a senior in high school the day of 9-11, and this really pushed me to join the fire service. And to get to come out here today with my brothers and sister firefighters and EMT’s and paramedics and law enforcement, some I’ve worked with for a long time, some I’ve never met. But we all come together today to honor these fallen heroes of 9-11,” said Johnson.
And friends Corey Haynes and Jamie Adams represented the Columbus and Starkville Fire Departments.
“It was a great experience just being here with everybody and remembering what we were really here for because I mean this is what we do so when it’s time to go, it’s time to go no matter what’s going on,” said Haynes.
“I love it. It’s my third year in a row doing it.I’ve been in the service about four years, and I say it’s one of the best things you could possibly do for the 343 and the police officers and paramedics that lost their lives on 9-11,” said Adams.
And they rang a bell to remember those fallen heroes.