Story by Janmarie Foschini
The Greenwood Lake community came together on Tues., Sept. 11 to remember those who lost their lives and those who were affected by the tragic events that took place seventeen years ago.
The Greenwood Lake Fire Department hosted the community event at the new fire house, located at 17 Mountain Lakes Lane in Greenwood Lake. The memorial service was attended by volunteer firefighters, volunteers from the G.L. Ambulance Corps, G.L. and Warwick police officers, American Legion members, Village and Town officials, clergy from Holy Rosary and Grace Lutheran churches, boy scouts and girl scouts, and community members.
Vice President and firefighter Jackie Lowenberg welcomed the large crowd and thanked everyone for coming to pay their respects and remember all those affected by 9/11. During the memorial service, local resident and volunteer firefighter with the department, Bruce VanHine, was remembered and honored as one of the victims who lost their lives on 9/11. Bruce was a firefighter in NYC and on duty that day.
Fellow resident Linda Gronlund, an attorney and engineer, also lost her life that day as a passenger on Flight 93. She was remembered along all of those that the lives lost that day. Fallen heroes, 1st Lt. Lou (Louis) Allen and Lance Cpl. Scott Lynch, who were killed while serving and protecting the Country were also remembered . All of the individuals touched the lives of the community in a special way.
Village Justice Keith Garley and Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton each gave a touching tribute during the service to all the brave individuals. Mayor Jesse Dwyer spoke to the crowd, thanking the Fire Department for hosting the event and recalling his experience during the events of 9/11.
“I am thankful for the community coming out to not only remember and honor the fallen, but to support our current first responders on this day. They remain prepared, willing and able to make the ultimate sacrifice for our community and we owe them support every day of our lives,” said Mayor Dwyer.
The ceremony included with the Fireman’s Prayer, led by Assistant Chief Alex Nicholas. Fr. Robert Sweeney officiated a prayer service. Vice President Lowenberg recited a poem, songs were sung and moments of silence were held.
The steel beam that was retrieved from the Ground Zero site was on display and the community was given the opportunity to pay tribute to it, along with the memorial photos that were on display inside the building.
“This year we had an excellent turn out from the public attending the service. We hope everyone will continue to come year after year to pay tribute to the members of our community lost on 9/11,” said Vice President Lowenberg.
After the conclusion of the memorial service, members of the community were seen thanking first responders for their services. The fire department members served refreshments to everyone who attended.