Firefighters commemorate 9/11 in Southeast
As the Bureau has done on September 11 for a decade and a half, Portland Fire & Rescue held a remembrance gathering on the east bank of the Willamette River at Station 21 on that date again this year.
"This is an awesome opportunity for the Fire Bureau and civilians to get together and honor those we lost on 9/11 some 16 years ago," remarked Portland Fire Fighters' Association Secretary and Treasurer, Firefighter Travis Chipman, before the service began.
Firefighters aren't daredevils, Chipman said. "I like to say we take calculated risks; the people we serve expect a certain level of dedication to their lives and property, and we're willing to take those risks when the time arises."
When he arose to address the outdoor assembly, PF&R Chief Mike Myers commended firefighters who had come from Portland and other cities, to help save Multnomah Falls Lodge from flames in the massive Eagle Creek Fire in the Columbia Gorge.
"Firefighters develop the courage, to without question, go in, and stand that ground, and save that property, and save lives," Myers said.
Portland City Commissioner Nick Fish commended the association for hosting the somber event. "Today, we remember those who lost their lives while being so brave and selfless on 9/11, and in the days that followed – never putting concerns for their own personal safety ahead of their duty to their job. All the firefighters sacrifice.
"On behalf of a grateful city, I also acknowledge all the firefighters serving us here in Portland," Fish said, adding that he hopes to see the "David Campbell Memorial" to fallen firefighters erected before he leaves public service.
After a moment of silence, the memorial service was over. Chief Myers told THE BEE what he hopes all who attended take away from remembrance: "We want to make sure the people have the opportunity to remember 9/11; it's an important day for firefighters. At the same time, our own firefighters are always there, doing the same type of things.
"But if you boil it down to the simple actions of firefighters, those take place 24 hours a day, every day of the week, here in Portland. As the Fire Chief, this is my opportunity to stand before them and thank them for it."