9/11/18 – Scouts and First Responders 9-11 Memorial Salute

West Michigan Boy Scouts and First Responders salute the American Flag outside the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum. The annual event is meant to honor those who sacrificed but also current personnel who risk their lives in the service of others. Photo credit: WCSG.

Dozens of Boy Scouts, first responders and law enforcement personnel took part in the 9-11 memorial salute in downtown Grand Rapids.

Scouts and others will be saluting the American flag from sunrise to sunset at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential museum.  They do this to honor those who have sacrificed and those who are currently serving to protect citizens.

Ken Chudy is a retired assistant fire chief in Muskegon and one of the organizers. He says young people participating, is critical.

“It’s like a history lesson in a sense.  And hopefully they’ll take something out of that, why they’re doing it.”

Chudy says many of the scouts were not even born before or by 9/11/2001.  He says the importance of remembering something that happened only 17 years ago cannot be understated.

“Any date that changed the way we do things, which it did, should be remembered by everybody.”

Chudy was on duty the day hijackers took over the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania.  And while he says people in this profession understand what its like to know you could sacrifice your life at any given moment, he hopes more that people recognize the significance of that moment.

“To me personally, I want to honor those guys but I also want to help spread the word that we should all remember.  It’s just like Pear Harbor just like some of the other big days that are always remembered because they change the way America did things.”