07 first respondersShowing off its new logo and symbol of pride, the 2018 Campaign of Honor continues to pay tribute to Cumberland County’s first responders in remembrance of September 11, 2001. This week, Fayetteville and Cumberland County Law Enforcement and area fire departments were at the center of attention. Sen. Wesley Meredith, friends and colleagues  visited the city and county fire departments, Hope Mills and Fayetteville police departments and the Cumberland County Sheriff ’s Department. 

Fayetteville Police Chief Gina Hawkins welcomed Meredith and those with him to the department with introductions to her key staff and an update on the successes of community crime prevention programs.

Hope Mills Police Chief Joel Acceiardo introduced the visiting group to his key officers and explained some of the interactive community awareness programs that have been successful in controlling crime and creating safe neighborhoods. 

At the county level, Sheriff Ennis Wright welcomed everyone to the Law Enforcement Center, and Chief Deputy Richard Jenkins gave a tour of the downtown facility. 

While on this tour, Meredith said, “I’m very impressed and encouraged at the extraordinary efforts being made by local law enforcement to encourage and implement proactive community awareness programs that have resulted in forging trust and invaluable partnerships with the residents of Cumberland County.  

“Cooperation, communication and teamwork between these law enforcement professionals are what make Cumberland County communities safe places to live and work. Very impressive.”  

All the entities visited offer a variety of ongoing awareness programs, including citizens academies designed to educate the public and provide a better understanding of the challenges and conditions that law enforcement officers face each and every day. 

Next stop was the Fireman’s Association meeting in Stedman, where Meredith and associates extended their appreciation to the professionals of the Fayetteville and Cumberland County fire departments for their dedication to public safety. Meredith and the members of the 2018 Campaign of Honor extended everyone a personal invitation to the First Responder’s Reception that will be held Sept. 11 in downtown Fayetteville. 

The highlight of the reception will be the introduction and recognition of  Fayetteville resident Bettye Glenn. Glenn was a survivor of the North Tower 9/11 terrorist attacks. She shared her amazing and touching experience with Meredith and colleagues at the Stedman Fire Department. As Glenn was escaping down the stairwell from the 24th floor, she came face to face with a young fireman heading upward. 

“Honestly, I will never forget the look on his face,” she said. Ever since then, Glenn said, she has been a strong advocate for all firemen. Her interview and story have been documented on film and will  be available to view on local social media networks soon.

The Sept. 11 First Responder’s Reception will be held at The TapHouse, located at 411 Hay St. in historic downtown Fayetteville, from 5:30-7 p.m. The event is being hosted by Eben Concepts, Up & Coming Weekly, Williford Hollers Crenshaw Boliek & Frangakis LLP, Huske Hardware House and other local businesses and organizations.

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