Firefighters from Sumiton, Dora, Bagley, Argo and Yerkwood attended the appreciation dinner, along with members of Sumiton’s Police Department, paramedics from Regional Paramedical Services and students in Bevill State Community College’s paramedics program.
“I believe a local church should be engaging the community and this is a way we can do that,” SCoG pastor Martin Taylor said. “We want to be a church that gives, and we want to be a church that serves.”
The church will also host an appreciation service for the first responders this Sunday in the sanctuary, starting at 10:45 a.m. All area first responders are invited to come be honored for their service to the community.
The church hosted a similar service last year in conjunction with the 10 year anniversary of September 11th. Taylor said the event was largely thought up by youth pastor Kevin Mills, who also did the cooking for the appreciation dinner.
“It’s just a way to show our appreciation,” Mills said. “We’re trying to give back.”
The first responders expressed their appreciation to the church members.
“There are not a lot of people who realize what we do,” Sumiton Fire Chief David Waid, who is also a part-owner at RPS and works as a Sumiton police officer, said. “It’s nice when people recognize you.”
Sumiton Mayor Petey Ellis also attended the event and said he was glad to see the first responders honored, because their actions and sacrifices so often go unnoticed.