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‘A time to honor those who lost their lives:’ Sheriff’s Office hosts ceremony for 20th anniversary of 9/11 terror attacks
9/11 Ceremony
Dawson County Sheriff’s Office and Dawson County Fire and Emergency Services held a remembrance ceremony for the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, on Saturday, Sept. 11. - photo by Sharon Hall

The city of Dawsonville came together for a service on Saturday morning for the 20th anniversary of 9/11 terror attacks, hosted by the Dawson County Sheriff's office at the Dawson County High School Performing Arts Center. 

“9/11 is a time of remembrance...a time to honor those who lost their lives,” Dawson County sheriff Jeff Johnson said at the event. “A time to honor the bravery and sacrifice of our public safety personnel and those patriots who refused to surrender. We honor their memories. It is also a time to realize the brevity of life and focus on our bountiful blessings - our loved ones.”

Unification was part of the message during this 9/11 service. The service drew a sizable crowd filling half of the auditorium, including US Rep. Andrew Clyde. The ceremony started with a rolling display of the names of all of those who were taken that day. 

“It helped me see how important it was to not get complacent and how this country could be targeted so easily if we didn’t retain some level of alertness,” Capt. Ray Goodie said at the event. “That fact is why we should never forget these events and always remain in a mindset showing we are aware of the dangers, and that we can’t allow it to happen again.”

Along with the sheriff’s office, State Rep. William Wade spoke during the event. He said that he admired the first responders for signing up to "run to the uncomfortable.” 

“I started realizing the importance of leadership and decision making,” Wade said. “It was one of those pinnacle moments that gave me direction. Everything became real and drew me into service like everyone back then in those days when we became unified as a country.”

The service paid homage to those fallen that day and bore reverence to that same bravery and fortitude that exists here within our community.

“In a world of overt political correctness and passiveness, may we never forget those that have given the ultimate sacrifice on this day 20 years ago in the face of an enemy that hates America, and the freedoms provided to each person here,” Dawson County commissioner Chris Gaines said.

Pastor Don Allen of War Hill Church closed the ceremony with his final prayers. 

“I think what I just prayed was the heart of 9/11; that we use it as a reminder of what we should do today,” Allen said. “That we remember how quickly life passes and that we too can be courageous and that we remember Christ shone even on the darkest day.” 

In total 2,977 souls were lost on Sept. 11, 2001. The heroes, police officers, firemen, EMT’s, paramedics, doctors, nurses, and everyday citizens, answered the call of action for their fellow Americans.