Beaufort High remembers 9-11 and honors heroes

Patriotism filled the air as students from Beaufort High School gathered with local firefighter and police officers to remember the 10th anniversary of 9-11.

"Dear Heavenly Father, we are gathered here today to honor those who gave the ultimate sacrifice on that faithful day," prayed one of the students as they started off the ceremony.

September 11, 2001 is a day Beaufort Police Officer Pat Schmucker told the students he'll never forget. He was a Marine at the time, serving in Japan.

"The air sirens went off, our battalion commander, platoon sergeants came running in the barracks and told us it's time boys, get your gear and draw your ammo," said Officer Schmucker.

It was an emotional time for Port Royal Police Officer John Difalco as well. He was serving in New York at the time of the attacks.

"If I close my eyes, and think hard I can still smell it, the smoke and everything that went on there," said Officer John Difalco. "I hope nobody has to go through that. The devastation was incredible."

But for many of the students, the memories aren't as vivid.

"I was young, in Kindergarden so I don't remember much, just that the teacher turned on the TV," said David Tilton, Beaufort High student.

While the students here were young when the terrorist attacks happened, the anniversary continues to be a meaningful time.

"It's really emotional because it shows how many people died, the devastation to America," said Tilton.

"Its enlightening because I learn a lot more about it as I get older because you didn't really know was going on at the time," said Kat Sanders, student.

But they certainly understand the significance of that day and the important role our heroes played. So today, students honored the Lady's Island St. Helena Firefighters and the Beaufort Police Officers with special plaques, thanking them for their service.

"To actually take the time to recognize and understanding what we went through as service members, firefighters, police officers at that time means a lot to us," said Schmucker.

"It's nice to see that generation still concerned about what happened, reflecting on what happened," said LISH Fire Battalion Chief Eric Taylor.

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