By DORIS ELMORE
It is hard to believe, but 20 years ago on September 11, 2021 was the dreadful day of 9/11. To commemorate that day, the Piatt County Firefighter’s Association is hosting a 9/11 Memorial Parade. With this ceremony, the Firefighters and First Responders are honored to be remembering the brave sacrifice of the 343 FDNY Firefighters, 60 NYC and Port Authority Officers and 8 EMT’s who gave their lives doing their job that day.
They are also honored to remember the brave passengers of Flight 93 and the military personnel at the Pentagon. We are blessed to live in a country of people who take care of each other. This is what these brave heroes did that fateful day. The 2,977 victims of this attack hold a special place in the hearts of all First Responders, as well as the country.
The parade timeline is as follows:
•8:00 a.m: Step off in Bement. 20 minutes walking. 8:20 a.m.: Leave Bement.
•8:35 a.m.: Arrive in Atwood. 15 minutes walking. 8:50 a.m.: Leave Atwood.
• 8:57 a.m.: Arrive in Hammond. 10 minutes walking. 9:07 a.m.: Leave Hammond.
• 9:23 a.m.: Arrive in Cerro Gordo. 15 minutes walking. 9:38 a.m.: Leave Cerro Gordo.
• 9:46 a.m.: Arrive in Cisco. 10 minutes walking. 9:56 a.m.: Leave Cisco.
• 10:05 a.m.: Arrive in Weldon. 10 minutes walking. 10:15 a.m.: Leave Weldon.
• 10:21 a.m.: Arrive in DeLand. 10 minutes walking. 10:31 a.m.: Leave DeLand.
• 10:47 a.m.: Arrive in Mansfield. 15 minutes walking. 11:02 a.m.: Leave Mansfield.
• 11:16 a.m.: Arrive in White Heath. 10 minutes walking. 11:26 a.m.: Leave White Heath.
• 11:35 a.m.: Arrive in Monticello. 20 minutes walking. 11:55 a.m.: Arrive at Monticello High School.
I know many of you like to sleep in on Saturday morning, but this one Saturday is a day to get up and line Main Street showing your support for the Piatt County Firefighter’s Association and the 2,977 victims of this terrible attack.
The parade is scheduled to arrive in Monticello at 12 noon at the Monticello High School football stadium. The ceremony agenda is Presentation of Colors-Monticello VFW; National Anthem; Seating of Special Guests; Invocation-Pastor Mike Drake, United Church of Atwood; Welcome & Introductions-Dan Sheehan Lt., Monticello Fire Department; Illinois Senator Chapin Rose; United States Congressman Rodney Davis; Reading of the Companies-Monticello High School Students; Special Music and Ringing of the Bell at the end of program.
This will be an impressive ceremony and a wonderful tribute to the victims of 911. Plan to line the streets at each town, then attend the ceremony. A special thanks to the organizers: John Rupkey, Monticello Fire Department, Austin Wiggins & Matt Wilhelm-Cisco Fire Department, Dan Sheehan, Monticello Fire Department, and Ellen Lynch-Atwood Fire Department.