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Remembering 9/11, 10 years after

Langley City fire department Capt. Bruce Kilby recites the poem “Climb Higher,” written shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 tragedy by former City fire chief Jim McGregor. It was part of the fire department’s service to remember 9/11 victims on Sunday. Current chief Rory Thompson stands behind Kilby, while members of the department listen. - Frank Bucholtz/Langley Times
Langley City fire department Capt. Bruce Kilby recites the poem “Climb Higher,” written shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 tragedy by former City fire chief Jim McGregor. It was part of the fire department’s service to remember 9/11 victims on Sunday. Current chief Rory Thompson stands behind Kilby, while members of the department listen.
— image credit: Frank Bucholtz/Langley Times

Ten years to the day, Langley City firefighters remembered the sacrifices of 411 emergency service workers on Sept. 11, 2001 — 343 of them New York City firefighters.

The fire department held a ceremony of remembrance outside  the fire hall Sunday afternoon, with about 50 people attending, along with numerous local politicians. These included MP Mark Warawa, MLA Mary Polak, Mayor Peter Fassbender and most members of City council.

Chief Rory Thompson said everyone remembers where they were when they first heard about the events of that day.

‘We saw people work together selflessly, and the 411 who died worked valiantly and fearlessly.”

Capt. Bruce Kilby read the poem “Climb Higher,”  a tribute to the emergency workers written by former City fire chief Jim McGregor,  shortly after the tragedy. The poem received a large amount of attention.

Capt.Wes Hamilton rang the bell, which firefighters do to honour those who gave their lives.

Firefighter Dave Skidmore said those who gave their lives “as they faithfullyanswered their call.”

Skidmore noted that, on average, about 10 firefighters give their lives each year in North America.

“We must never forget the sacrifices made on 9/11. They came to work prepared and honoured their calls.”

Fassbender acknowledged the sacrifices made on 9/11 and the close bond that firefighters feel, both within departments and with other firefighters. He spoke of the loss of Langley City firefighter Ron Dunkley earlier this year, who died after a valiant two-month struggle in hospital, following an incident where he was hit by a train in Seattle.

“That loss was profound here,” Fassbender said.

“Sept. 11 was a tragic and profound reminder that things happen, but things happen every day. We will give (firefighters) the support they need.”

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