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Jackson Fire & Rescue plans 9/11 memorial

Most of us remember that Tuesday morning when we turned on the TV to see smoke billowing from one of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City.

We can still see the red and yellow flames roaring out the side of the tower where Al Qaeda terrorists had hijacked an airliner and had flown it into the building.

We may have sat transfixed in front of the TV screen as another jetliner was flown into the second tower, and then another into the Pentagon building.

On board a fourth jetliner, passengers overpowered the terrorists, but the plane crashed into a Pennsylvania field.

Those scenes are burned into our memories.

But seniors graduating from high school this year have no memory of the attack on Sept. 11, 2001. They either had not been born or were too young to remember.

As time goes on, there will be fewer and fewer people who remember that day.

Firefighters from Jackson Fire & Rescue want to be sure the events of that day and the sacrifice made by firefighters and police officers are not forgotten.

They are planning a memorial to be constructed in front of Fire Station No. 1, across from the Iron Mountain Railroad depot.

The base of the memorial will be pavestones in the shape of a pentagon. Each side of the pentagon will be 20-25 feet long.

The approach to the memorial will be pavestones as well, and firefighters who die in the line of duty will have their names engraved on these.

Three flag poles will be placed on the memorial to show respect to the country, state, and the firefighter profession.

A replica of the Twin Towers made of granite will be engraved with the names of the 343 firefighters who died on 9/11.

In front of the towers will be a statue of a kneeling firefighter, paying respect to those firefighters who lost their lives on that tragic day. (The original plans called for a statue of stacked firefight-ing equipment.)

Four benches will be engraved with additional information about 9/11, such as details on Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania, or about the 37 police officers who died that day.

“We hope people will learn facts they didn’t know,” said Firefighter Samuel Herndon, who discussed plans at the Jackson Area Chamber of Commerce Business Breakfast Friday.

Herndon designed the memorial with help and input from others.

Jackson Fire & Rescue is seeking donations to pay for the memorial.

“Our goal is to raise $1 for the 5,000 individuals who died on 9/11, and $1 for each of the 25,000 who were saved. That adds up to $30,000,” Herndon said.

While there are some 9/11 memorials in the State of Missouri, this will be the first in Southeast Missouri. It will be manufactured here by local craftsmen and artists.

Gregory Dullum has worked for The Cash-Book Journal for more than 25 years. Prior to becoming the editor in May 2017, he was production manager, circulation manager and reporter. Before moving to Cape Girardeau in 1988, he was editor of the Saint Louis Park Sailor, a weekly community newspaper in suburban Minneapolis, MN. A native of Minnesota, he returned there after graduating with distinction in 1978 from Ambassador College in Pasadena, CA, with a degree in mass communications. His wife, Marie, whom he met in college, is a native of Zalma, a small town in southeast Missouri. They have two grown daughters and five grandchildren. Gregory may be reached at

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