Ceremony honors first responders

(Jasmine Payoute)
Published: Sep. 12, 2018 at 8:53 AM CDT
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A Bossier Chamber of Commerce-sponsored event pays tribute to first responders, those tasked with keeping us safe on a daily basis.

BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - First responders in the ArkLatex were honored at a ceremony in Bossier City.

The ceremony sponsored by the Bossier Chamber of Commerce was held at the Bossier Civic Center.

Organizers say in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, it is important to remember those who often are first on the scene.

“What we’ve been doing since the terror of 9/11 is we’ve been honoring our first responders and the Shreveport-Bossier community. Those are our unsung heroes,” said Lisa Johnson, the chamber’s president.

Col. Casey Cooley, who is stationed at Barksdale Air Force Base, believes 9/11 was the day soldiers and first responders became one. They all started acting on one accord to support their country the best way they knew how - both abroad and here at home.

“Before 9/11, I guess there was kind of a thought in the military that we were the ones guarding freedom,” Cooley said. “And at point in time, it became personal to the whole nation. So police officers, fire department, emergency medical services, they were part of us now.”

The chamber honored first responders by giving them food and a trophy for risking their lives by being the first on the scene.

"Folks love this beautiful trophy that they get. ... It’s a beautiful eagle and it represents freedom and security and what they do for us on the front lines,” Johnson said.

Cooley said the effects of 9/11 are all around us. One of them being the undeniable relationship between soldiers and first responders.

“The solidarity between soldiers and first responders that are all being honored here today, it can’t be stronger.”

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