9/11 events mark a day we all remember: Golf, memorial ceremony, banquet honor first responders, veterans | VailDaily.com

9/11 events mark a day we all remember: Golf, memorial ceremony, banquet honor first responders, veterans

Vail Mountain School students Julie Brown, Libbie Stanton, and Catelin Truitt operated a lemonade stand and donated the money they made to the local VFW Post's scholarship fund. The VFW is hosting a Never Forget golf tournament to raise scholarship money. Local first responder agencies are hosting a 9/11 ceremony at Freedom Park, and the local Rotary Clubs are hosting their annual Public Safety Recognition Dinner.

EDWARDS — You remember a select few days for the way they changed everything.

Sept. 11, 2001, was one. Some students in high school now were not born when the Twin Towers collapsed, or terrorists crashed an airliner into the Pentagon, or heroic passengers saved an untold number of victims when they wrested control of an airliner over Pennsylvania from terrorists, but paid for it with their own lives.

To help us remember, and never forget, the local VFW Post, first responder agencies and Rotarians are hosting three events Tuesday, Sept. 11.

Never Forget golf tournament

The Never Forget Memorial Golf Tournament opens the day at 8 a.m. at the Eagle-Vail golf course. The event has been sold out for weeks.

"We're so happy for all the sponsors and support we've had from the community. The tournament filled up so fast it pleasantly surprised everyone," said Moses Gonzales, who started putting the event together last October with Lt. Col. Buddy Sims, U.S. Air Force, Vietnam and Iraq veteran.

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"It's a good way to remember the people who lost their lives on 9/11," Gonzales said.

Every dime goes to the VFW's scholarship programs. The VFW Post gives tens of thousands of dollars in scholarships to graduating local high school seniors. Once you earn a scholarship, you keep receiving your scholarship as long as you're in college, Gonzales said, which means the VFW has to continually raise money.

Along with golf and a 9/11 ceremony, the VFW will honor three young Vail Mountain School students — Julie Brown, Libbie Stanton and Catelin Truitt — who ran a lemonade stand and are donating the $300 they earned to the post's scholarship fund.

Golfers tee off at 8:30 a.m. While the field is full, you can still donate to their silent auction and be a sponsor. Contact Gonzales at 970-376-6952 or email mtn moses@hotmail.com.

Always remember

At 10 a.m., local first responders will host a ceremony at Freedom Park in Edwards at the memorial for military veterans and first responders.

Colorado State Patrol Trooper Jeff Briggs is coordinating the Freedom Park event, as he has for the past few years when he was an Avon Police officer. Briggs was on duty one Sept. 11 and asked around about a memorial ceremony and was told there wasn't one.

That, he said, would never do. So he put one together.

"As we have said since Day 1, we will never forget. Sept. 11 deserves our time and attention," Briggs said.

A processional for EMS/first responders and the public begins at 9 a.m. on Vail's Frontage Road at Ford Park and will pass by several local schools and agencies as it proceeds to Freedom Park in Edwards.

There's a fascinating history about the piece of Pentagon limestone on display in Freedom Park. Sims and Capt. Pete Thompson, U.S. Army Vietnam veteran, will fill us in on it at the event.

Recognizing those who serve

The evening is highlighted with the annual Tri-Club Rotary Public Safety Recognition dinner in Vail's Donovan Pavilion.

First responders from agencies around the county will be honored for their lifesaving and heroic work.

Among the honorees are firefighters who battled the Lake Christine fire and other wildfires across the West, vehicle pursuits, lifesaving work and other acts in the line of duty.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and rwyrick@vaildaily.com.