Fifth Annual 9/11 and Patriot’s Day Remembrance Ceremony

Key note speaker David Graves giving his speech at the ceremony.

By Lauren Nix

The fifth annual 9/11 Remembrance and Patriot’s Day Ceremony was held on Church Street in Mountain Brook today at 9 a.m.

The cities of Mountain Brook, Vestavia and Homewood rotate hosting the event each year, and fire and police departments, as well as the mayors, from each city were all present.

“It’s very nice to get everyone together,” said Mayor of Mountain Brook Terry Oden.  “Vestavia, Mountain Brook and Homewood all get along together, we’re all big buds.”

The ceremony was one of gratitude and respect for all who serve our country and the men and women who lost their lives during of the tragic events of September 11, 2001.

“I think all of us will just remember what happened that day and where we were and all the people who lost their lives and all the sacrifice that has come on since then,” David Graves, the key note speaker for the event, said.

The ceremony began with a welcome speech and recognition of special guests by Mountain Brook Fire Chief Robert “Zeke” Ezekiel, followed by an invocation, flag ceremony, the playing of the national anthem and a bell ceremony by the city of Homewood’s Fire Department.

Mayor Scott McBrayer of Homewood, Mayor Butch Zaragoza of Vestavia Hills and Mayor Terry Oden of Mountain Brook each recognized citizens of their city who serve our country in a military service honor roll.

Abrielle Mullins, the daughter of Mountain Brook Battalion Chief Chris Mullins, sang a touching song she wrote called “Rain Down on Me” dedicated to all who serve our country.

Key note speaker David Graves gave a speech which resonated with all present because he served active duty in Iraq and is now back and truly thankful to all soldiers, police officers and fire fighters for their service.

“I was just honored that they think of me and it was humbling to be standing up there with all the firemen and police officers,” Graves said.

The ceremony concluded with some final words from Chief Ezekiel and a rendition of “Amazing Grace” played on the bagpipes by Alabaster Firefighter’s Pipes and Drums.

An American flag suspended between two ladder fire trucks served as the backdrop for the stage and was a truly beautiful sight while honoring our country.

The ceremony will be held in Vestavia Hills next year.


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