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Selma Fire Department honors 9/11

The Selma Fire Department observed the 17th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks at its main headquarters on Tuesday.

The SFD held a memorial cookout with its staff where everyone gathered to remember the events of Sept. 11, 2001, the day where aircrafts crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Arlington County, Virginia and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

In the 9/11 attacks, 343 firefighters of the New York City Fire Department were killed among the 2,977 victims.

SFD Fire Chief Toney Stevens said the purpose was to honor 9/11.

“We had a luncheon with all of the firefighters and Chief Stevens wanted it to be a leisurely kind of day,” SFD Battalion Chief Joseph Salter said.

Salter remembers exactly what he was doing on 9/11.

“I was off from the fire department and working at my part time job sanding marble floors,” Salter said.  “I heard about it and told my dad what had happened. We saw the second plane crash and that ended our day of working.”

Salter said 9/11 altered the firefighting approach, especially the training aspect.

“It made us more aware and the training was changed to weapons of mass destruction,” Salter said.

Salter said 9/11 also had an impact on his life. For the past 23 years, he’s been married to Nancy Salter. They have three adult children: Trey, Trent and Alanna.

“It changed how I protect my family,” Salter said. “It changed how I feel about my brothers at the fire department. It changed everything in my life.”