The Summit Council, to honor and thank our first responders, placed a monument at the Farmingdale Public Library. Its purpose is very simple: it is to say “thank you” to all the people in our community who put themselves on the line each and every day to serve the rest of us. That service might be to keep us from being the victims of crime, to keep our homes and loved ones safe from fire, or to help us deal with a medical emergency. We sincerely hope that you have never needed the services of these wonderful people, and that you never will, but we know how dedicated and caring all these people are and how their very presence helps make a frightening situation better.
Regardless of how they serve, the First Responders give of themselves on a daily basis. They put themselves in harm’s way, they interrupt their own time with their loved ones and they are often exposed to the worst that our world has to throw at us. Throughout all of that, they continue to serve. We must remember, though, that regardless of how dedicated a first responder might be, he or she is just human like the rest of us. They suffer when they must wade into a terrible situation; they share the very pain that they are trained to alleviate in everyone else. And they still come back for more for only one reason: we need them.
So our purpose in arranging for this monument is simple: to say to our community’s policemen and policewomen, to our firefighters and to our EMS workers, that, although we don’t say it often enough, we are grateful for your service and for your sacrifice. You enrich our lives and those of our loved ones. The Summit offers our community this place of reflection. We hope that when you pass it you will pause briefly to think of how blessed we are that there are people who so selflessly give of themselves for others.
The water that trickles through the fountain is symbolic of the water that we must have to survive; just as critical to our survival is the work of our community’s first responders. We thank them for being our friends, we thank them for being our neighbors, and we thank them for being our heroes.