First responders from Oklahoma and surrounding states said September 11, 2001, is a day they will never forget and 20 years later they honor those who lost their lives helping during the 9/11 attacks.
Several first responders said the morning of 9/11 is a memory that will live with them for their entire life.
“You remember everything that happened that day. The tragedy, the sadness, the sorrow you felt and really kind of some of the fear of not knowing what was going to happen,” Edmond Fire Department Cpt. Luke Gregory said.
That day thousands of people died as highjacked planes crashed into the Twin Towers in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington D.C., and lastly in a field in Pennsylvania.
“My dad was actually a late minute kicked off one of the flights that was going to be in September 11th. I lived in New Jersey and so it holds a special part to me to know I have family and friends who passed away on that tragic day,” Oklahoma City firefighter Jamil Buie said.
Among those killed were hundreds of first responders who lost their lives saving others. Edmond and OKC hosted physical challenges, both a 5K run and memorial stair climbs.
“It's emotional for me. I think about the guy that I ran for. I ran for father Mychal Judge. He was the catholic priest-chaplain, and he was the first confirmed fatality,” Oklahoma Firefighter Retired Lieutenant David Throwbridge said.
The stair climb is the equivalent of the 110 stories of the World Trade Center. Many of the first responders wore a lanyard with the name of an emergency responder killed during the attacks. On OKC firefighter Taryn Rooney's lanyard was New York firefighter Frank Palombo.
“I hope I did him proud. I really did and I hope that I can have the same legacy in my career in the next 20 plus years,” Rooney said.