ST. ALBANS — City and Town of St. Albans fire departments will host a joint 9/11 tribute next week to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the terrorist attack that took nearly 3,000 American lives.
The tribute will begin at 7 a.m. Sept. 11, when both departments will raise an American flag across the city’s Main Street. The flag, which is also raised on Memorial and Veterans Days, will stretch between two ladder trucks and fly all day.
At 5 p.m., a memorial service will commence in Taylor Park. Mayor Tim Smith and Town Selectboard chair Brendan Deso will speak.
“Our country made a vow 20 years ago that we would never forget,” Town fire chief Harold Cross told the Messenger. “We want to let people know we're going to uphold that promise that we made to the nation, to all the victims' families and to the military who have sacrificed so much.”
City fire chief Matt Mulheron said the two departments have come together twice before to commemorate the tragedy. In 2002, City and Town Fire honored the first anniversary. In 2006, they observed the fifth.
Cross said both of those events were extremely well-attended by the community.
“I really think some people have forgotten, but we are pretty sure Franklin County hasn't forgotten,” he said.
Mulheron said department leaders made a commitment after the first two events to reconvene in 2021 for the 20th anniversary.
All members of the Franklin County International Firefighters Association are invited to attend, according to a “Save the Date” announcement from the two departments. Emergency medical personnel, law enforcement officers, veterans and Franklin County community members are also encouraged to attend.