COLUMBIA (WACH) ?? Midlands First responders from the all branches of the military, law enforcement, fire service, and EMS who have given their life in service will be honored Tuesday evening at the First Responders Remembrance Memorial on Lincoln Street.
The memorial also bears the names of the 47 first responders from the midlands who have died in the line of duty since September 11, 2001.
The First Responders Memorial is full of symbolism, including a pair of twenty-five foot granite towers, which according to project founder Dan Hennigan, stands for the resolve of the country. Two twisted steel beams from the World Trade Center are crossed to show how the country came together after the attacks. There is even a set of coordinates where, if you were to be in Afghanistan with a GPS, you would find a First Responder Memorial challenge coin buried.
Built last year to mark the 10 year anniversary of the attacks, the memorial cost over $750,000, most of which was raised through private cash and in-kind donations. Hospitality tax money from Richland and Lexington counties and the City of Columbia was also used.
The memorial??s location at the Metropolitan Convention Center was chosen because communities from all over the Midlands contribute to it, making it a Midland??s location, rather than one in a specific city.
Tuesday evening??s ceremony will include guest speakers General Bryan Roberts, Fort Jackson??s Commanding General, The Adjutant General of the South Carolina National Guard, Robert Livingston , military and law enforcement flyovers, and an honor guard presentation dedicating the 4 new names to the memorial.
The event begins at 6 p.m. and is open to the public. The use of the parking deck on Park Street will be free during the time of the ceremony.
Lincoln Street from Gervais Street to Pendleton Street will be closed, as well as Senate Street from Park to the Convention Center during the ceremony.
For more information on the memorial, and the historical relationship between South Carolina and the City of New York, you can visit the memorial's website.