‘We promise to never forget them’: Macon remembers first responders

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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Firefighters and police officers gathered at Public Safety Memorial Park to pay their respects to the first responders who died saving people on September 11, 2001.

Bibb County Sheriff David Davis says he hopes the ceremony allowed people to remember the events of 9/11 and reflect on the sacrifices of fallen officers.

“With honor, they serve and with reverence we remember,” Davis said. “We pay honor to those who paid that ultimate sacrifice locally as well as remembering those in faraway places.”

The ceremony took place around monuments with the names of Bibb County’s fallen officers and first responders.

Fire Chief Marvin Riggins says no matter the circumstances, we should always honor those who gave their lives 19 years ago.

“We made a promise that we would never forget that moment that occurred, and the tragedy that occurred, and the loss of life sacrificed,” Riggins stated. “We promise to never forget them, so we came even in the midst of a pandemic, we promised that we would never forget them.”

Flags flew at half staff and several community leaders spoke to the crowd.

Mayor Robert Reichert approached the podium for an emotional impromptu speech. Reichert used his speech to thank the everyday heroes.

“It’s so appropriate that we remember and reflect and memorialize all those who have served and died here on a local level, and who continue day in and day out, every day to risk their lives and personal safety for our benefit,” Reichert said.

Although the tragic events of 9/11 did not happen in Bibb County, the community will never forget this day.

Of the 2,977 victims killed in the September 11 attacks, 412 emergency workers who responded to the World Trade Center died as well.

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Peyton Lewis is a 20-year-old reporter from Stockbridge, Georgia. She graduated in December of 2019 with her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from the University of Georgia. She found a love for reporting after receiving a video camera for her 8th birthday. She and her friends would make mock newscasts in her backyard other creative content. Peyton's love for writing and creating videos pushed her to pursue journalism. In order to kick-start her dream of being a reporter, she left the traditional high school experience at the age of 16 to attend Gordon State College as a full-time student. She graduated with her Associate's degree two weeks before graduating from high school. Previously, Peyton worked as a news intern for 11 Alive in Atlanta, a radio intern for the Joy FM, and a reporter/ technical manager for Grady Newsource. Peyton dreams to become an investigative reporter that leaves a lasting impact on the world around her. She loves Disney, dogs, spicy food, musicals, and her family. Peyton also enjoys reading, watching movies, cheering on the Dawgs, and going on new adventures.