A 9/11 Memorial Service during Saturday’s Fire Apparatus Muster and Antique Car Show at the Sayrah Barn featured remarks by Congressman Diana Harshbarger related to the 20th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Sponsored by the Hawkins County Volunteer Fireman’s Association and its partner the East Tennessee Fire Historical Society, the event also featured several antique fire engines and a number of antique cars and trucks as well.
Some of the antique fire engines were from as far away as the Richmond, Va., area. One of them was a miniature fire-fighting vehicle built by the Oren Fire Apparatus Company in Roanoke, Va., in 1959.
Named the “Little Squirt,” the miniature fire engine has been used in parades since 1960 when it appeared in the American Legion National Convention Parade, promotional literature says.
Another of the antique fire engines on display out the Sayrah Barn on Saturday is owned by Bill Killen, present of the Hawkins County Volunteer Fireman’s Association.
Killen acted as master of ceremonies for 9/11 Anniversary. After a welcome from Killen, John Freitag, of the Hancock-Hawkins County Amateur Radio Team, offered the invocation for the ceremony.
Bag-piper Michael Poole, from Johnson City, the played “America the Beautiful” on his Sottish bagpipes before the U.S. and Tennessee colors were presented by a color guard from the Cherokee High School Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps unit.
The Pledge of Allegiance was then led by retired Chief Darryl Kerley of the Oak Ridge Fire Department.
Hawkins County Sheriff Ronnie Lawson the took the microphone to introduce special guests, including Congressman Harshbarger.
The Congressman told the audience assembled under sunny skies outside the Sayrah Barn that she had just come from a deployment ceremony for National Guard unit that is preparing to deploy to Kuwait for a year.
She thanked U.S, military personnel who have fought in Afghanistan for the last two decades until recently being withdrawn. She also noted that she was sad to see that Afghanistan has fallen back under Taliban control following the recent withdrawal of U.S. troops from that county.
At the conclusion of Harshbarger’s remarks, bagpiper Michael Poole played “Amazing Grace” before the ceremony turned to honoring three Tennesseans who died in the attacks to Sept. 11, 2001.
Those Tennessee victims include Tim Haviland, Tony Karnes and Rob Lenoir.
After their names were read aloud, retired Chief Darryl Kerley of the Oak Ridge Fire Department rang a ceremonial bell to honor their memories.
A benediction and closing prayer was then offered by John Freitag of the Hancock – Hawkins County Amateur Radio Team.
Michael Poole concluded the memorial service by playing “Going Home” on his bagpipes.