Remembering Heroes of September 11

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Sept. 11, 2001, is forever etched in the memories of millions around the world. Over 3,000 people died that day and 343 of them were firefighters.

"It's something I will never forget," said Chief Bunky Partridge of the Meridian Fire Department, and I can speak for the Meridian firefighters, some thing they will never forget."

Thursday, the Meridian firefighters held a private ceremony, unlike last year's public observance. It was a simple remembrance for fallen colleagues miles away.

"You say that's New York City, but Meridian firefighters are not that much different. The heat and the smoke are the same in New York as the heat and the smoke here in Meridian," Partridge said. "But today we remembered the firefighters lost and the families."

And like New York, Washington and cities across the nation, Meridian, Miss., along with its fire department stopped at 7:46 a.m. Eastern time, with flags at half staff for a moment of silence. The governor issued a proclamation to coincide with the declared by the governor at the exact time the first plane hit the north tower.

To say it changed lives would be an understatement. It reminded people to take nothing for granted, not even a seemingly eventless September morning. It reverberated from big cities to small towns. It was a day that turned children into orphans, wives into widows and everyday firemen into modern day heroes.