CLINTON TOWNSHIP – Every year, Clinton Township recognizes and honors the men and women who lost their lives as a result of the terrorist attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001.
“We held our first ceremony to commemorate Patriot Day on the Friday after the attacks, and I am proud that we’ve held a ceremony on September 11 of every year since,” said Township Supervisor Bob Cannon. “We are the only community in Macomb County that can proudly say that,” he said.
Last year, the Township extended its annual tribute beyond those who died nineteen years ago, to include first responders and workers who cleaned up the debris and are now suffering illnesses as a result of their proximity to ground zero. “September 11 continues to impact Americans and will for decades to come,” said Cannon.
The Annual Patriot Day 2020 ceremony in Clinton Township will begin at 2 p.m. on September 11, at Fire Station Number 4, located at 42591 Romeo Plank Road at the corner of Greenfield Road. The event is open to the public and is in-step with social distancing guidelines.
“On Patriot Day, we’ve always honored the military and first responders, as well as those who died during the attacks,” said Cannon. “This year, we’ll continue to recognize all of those groups, with an additional emphasis on our firefighters.”
Clinton Township Fire Chief Tim Duncan was planning to celebrate the fire department’s 75th anniversary in October, but the lingering effects of the pandemic led to a decision to recognize the milestone on Patriot Day. It’s then he will publically announce a fundraising campaign to erect a statue in honor of firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.
“We consider Fire Headquarters (Station 4) to be one of the gateways into the Township Civic Center area, and we look forward to having a landmark such as a statue for people to visit,” said Duncan. “It’s our desire to remember those we lost as well as dedicate a portion of the brick paver patio project to township residents that passed away due to fire-related causes,” he said.
Proceeds from the sale of memorial bricks and benches will be collected by the Clinton Township Firefighter’s Fund and will go toward the cost of the memorial statue.
Featured speakers at the event are two of Clinton Township’s first responders who will share their stories and memories of a fellow officer and firefighter who died in the line of duty. Lt. Anthony Coppola, CTPD, will speak about officer Richard Vauris, who was killed in the line of duty, and Lt. Rob Kokko CTFD will talk about the loss of his partner firefighter Dave Sutton.
The ceremony will also include the Clinton Township Police Department Honor Guard and the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 154 Honor Guard.
Below: Artist rendition of firefighter's statue.