On Saturday, September 10, 2016 seven firefighters from Southlake’s Fire Department and nine police officers from the Southlake Police Department will participate in the annual 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb in Dallas.
Southlake firefighters and police officers are climbing to honor the 343 fallen firefighters, 70 police officers, and nine EMS personnel who were killed on September 11, 2001 when the World Trade Center Towers fell. Each climber will be wearing full firefighter, police gear and equipment, just like the New York first responders did on that day.
Southlake Fire Chief Mike Starr, Lieutenant Ryan Sessums, Firefighters Jody Keeler, Will Mayer, John Jackson, Billy Vogler, and Daniel Lyons will be representing the Southlake Fire Department. Assistant Police Chief Ashleigh Douglas, Lieutenant Randy Thomas, Lieutenant Jose Luna, Sergeant Tyler Sewell, Sergeant Jason Henninger, Sergeant Jonathan Macheca, Corporal Blas Hernandez, Officer Weston Wood, and Officer Stefan Petrovich will represent the Southlake Police Department. Each member of the Southlake DPS team, along with the other climbers, will wear the name and picture of a fallen firefighter, police officer or EMS worker.
The 9/11 Dallas Stair Climb is held at the Renaissance Tower in Dallas. Saturday, hundreds of firefighters and police officers will join together to climb 110 floors, the same number of floors the first responders were faced with at the Twin Towers more than a decade ago.
Participating in the 9/11 Stair Climb is incredibly meaningful for all of the first responders. Fire Chief Mike Starr said, “It is an honor for us to pay tribute to the fallen firefighters and their families. We climb to remember them and to honor their memory.”
The 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb was organized following 9/11 and continues to grow each year. Assistant Chief Ashleigh Douglas said, “Participating in the stair climb is a very humbling experience. The climb allows us the opportunity to make certain these brave men and women will never be forgotten.”
Opening ceremonies begin at 8:00 a.m., followed by a moment of silence at 8:46 a.m., the time the first plane (Flight 11) flew into the North Tower. Firefighters and police officers will start their climb at 8:50 a.m., the same time first responders began arriving at the Twin Towers.
If you would like to show your support, you can come to the Renaissance Tower in Dallas to cheer on the climbers and/or if you would like to donate you can do so by going to the 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb.