Courage, honor, commitment, integrity, selflessness, sacrifice…

These are just a few of the countless number of words that come to mind when I think of the characteristic traits that embody a first responder.

For many of us who have not been directly involved in a situation of having to see these men and women at work, it may be hard to characterize them, to truly understand what it is they face every single day of their lives.

For those of us who have found ourselves in a situation that required the actions of a first responder, I can only tell you, our appreciation is by far, greater and deeper than mere words can possibly describe.  

My appreciation and respect for first responders was instilled in me as a young child. Growing up I experienced firsthand not just the actions of a first responder, but the sacrifices that came along with the job.

So this past Thursday, September 12, was very near and dear to me. Our team of ladies here at The News organized, planned and hosted a special luncheon event to say ‘thank you’ to all of our Williamsburg County first responders.

What an honor and a privilege it was to be able to thank all the men and women for all that they do, especially when we live in a time where it seems the growing lack of respect for authority in general is so rampant, and the words ‘thank you’ so rare... just sayin’.

They selflessly serve others without expecting anything in return. No words seem adequate enough to express our gratitude to all who serve our county and protect our communities.

So to all of our first responders, please know that we support you, we respect you, we honor you, we stand along side you.

And most important, we give all thanks and praise to God, for equipping each and everyone of you with the talents He has given you. Our continued thoughts and prayers are with you today and always.

On behalf of The News, I would like to thank everyone who attended our luncheon event and supported such a wonderful cause. It was certainly our honor to be able to show our appreciation and support to the first responders who go out and face whatever the day brings.

I would like to extend a very special thank you to UPL for their support as our presenting sponsor for the luncheon event, and to a special group of sponsors including Longstreet Chevrolet, Brown’s BBQ, Connie’s Bakery, Jenkinson Jarrett & Kellahan, PA, Santee Electric Cooperative, the Town of Kingstree, Pepsi, and IGA of Kingstree. We could not have done this without all of you.

Your feedback is always welcome. Readers are encouraged to email us at news@kingstreenews.com or write with your feedback, ideas, or questions.