Sistersville Pays Respect To Heroes Everywhere
Heroes Day was once again celebrated at Sistersville City Park on Saturday, September 9, starting in the morning and lasting into the afternoon. The event included free firetruck rides for youth, blood pressure checks by Sistersville Volunteer Fire Department’s Ambulance Service, an appearance by the Air Evac Life Flight Helicopter and personnel, tours of Tyler County Office of Emergency Management’s mobile units, meeting Sistersville’s new police canine Thor with his trainer Chief of Police Rob Haught, free hotdogs and hamburgers, and music by DJ Greg Goodfellow.
Now a state-recognized holiday, Heroes Day began as a way to recognize and honor those first responders who gave their lives following the terrorist attacks on New York City’s Twin Towers, as well as celebrating those local heroes who serve as firefighters, law enforcement officers, EMS workers, and more. Former Sistersville United Methodist Church Reverend Bill Dawson, who also served as chaplain of Sistersville Volunteer Fire Department, created the holiday in 2011 in light of the tenth anniversary of the 2001 tragedy. Reverend Dawson has since relocated to a church in Ritchie County, where they also celebrated Heroes Day on Saturday. The state-recognized holiday takes place on the second Saturday of September.
The Olive Branch Animal Rescue and Refuge assisted with free hot dogs and buns, Sistersville’s St. Paul Episcopal Church donated funding for food, Sistersville Volunteer Fire Department’s Auxiliary and firefighters helped prepare food, and Sistersville First United Methodist Church offered a free meal for first responders on Sunday morning.
Reverend Dawson’s vision to recognize first responders is appropriately named Heroes Day, and hopefully it will continue to be recognized in many more communities statewide.