Firefighters, community honor first responders killed Sept. 11, 2001

"A soul is a heavy thing to carry."

By Lindsey Kennett - Reporter

BUCHANAN, Va. - At exactly 8:46 a.m. Wedesnday, members of the Buchanan Volunteer Fire Department and the community paid tribute to the first responders who were killed Sept. 11, 2001.

The firefighters wore full turnout gear, carrying a special flag and a hose with the names of all 343 firefighters who died trying to save others.

Those 343 lives weighed on the firemen's shoulders. And the weight of their sacrifices weighed on volunteer fireman Bill Price's mind.

"For us firefighters, it's honoring our brother firefighters who died that day," Price said. "We hand wrote every name on that piece of hose."

Members of the community joined, too. They walked around town for 102 minutes to represent the time elapsed from the first impact on the Twin Towers to when neither tower was still standing, after they both collapsed. The group took moments of silence to mark each devastating event that morning 18 years ago, including when all four planes crashed and when the towers fell.

Daniel Garrett and his wife Amy, who are both veterans, carried flags and wore name tags honoring the victims.

"It wasn't just a name. They had families, loved ones who they left behind, and they were willing to give that all up," Daniel said.

"A soul is a heavy thing to carry," Amy said.

Every year, Price does something to remember those who died and so that his kids and future generations will never forget.

"I bring my two little boys who are 10 and 8. They're here today, and they walk because when I can't do this anymore and (when) I'm ... gone, they're going to carry it on for us," Price said. "As long as I'm here, they ain't going to be forgotten."

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