Communities in Southwest Louisiana honor first responders on 9/11

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Published: Sep. 11, 2023 at 7:55 AM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - Today marks the 22nd anniversary of the 9-11 terror attacks that shook the nation. Many will spend the day remembering those who were lost and honoring them, especially those first responders who braved the chaotic scenes despite the risks to their own lives.

Across the United States, today is also a time to show appreciation for current first responders who continue to protect and serve their communities.

In Kinder, a service day is being held starting at 8 a.m. and continuing until 3:30 in the afternoon. The event will honor firefighters and first responders by collecting supplies like water, Powerade, Liquid IV, and other items. Those who would like to donate can drop off supplies at the Allen Parish School Board office.

The SOWELA Community College culinary team will also be honoring the community’s first responders by preparing a breakfast.

“What we wanted to do is hold an event to tell the first responders and show the first responders policeman, fireman, paramedics, how much we appreciate what they do,” says Chancellor of SOWELA Dr. Neil Aspinwall. “Many times they’re heroes and no one really appreciates their efforts. So we want to provide them with a meal in our brand new culinary gaming hospitality center.”

At the event, first responders will also receive thank-you cards that were made by local elementary school students. The breakfast will be held from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and is by invitation only at the Lake Charles and Jennings campus.

If you would like to honor and remember those who lost their lives you can visit the 9/11 memorial at the Civic Center in Lake Charles where two World Trade Center beams and one slab of Pentagon limestone from the US government are displayed in an area where residents can meditate and reflect. The memorial pays tribute to all of the lives lost and is a testimony to the strength of the entire nation. It also honors the memory of two local men who were lost in the tragedy, Russ Keene and Kevin Yokum.