A prayer rally for first responders Saturday on the steps of the historic Liberty County Courthouse attracted residents, pastors, officials and first responders to pray for the safety and support of those who answer emergency calls.
The United Ministerial Alliance of Liberty County hosted the rally, and its president, Pastor Richard D. Hayes, presided. Members of Dreams First, a non-profit organization dedicated to inspiring youth, led the Pledge of Allegiance.
Liberty County EMA Deputy Director Larry Logan called the rally an opportunity to recognize the people who go above and beyond the call of duty.
“Every year, we should have an appreciation for first responders in Liberty County because they do so much,” he said. “It’s a good thing that we can all get together, commissioners, chairpersons, community members, and it not be a sad occasion. Instead of recognizing and acknowledging the death of a person, we acknowledge the life of a person.”
Pastors Cynthia Felix, Richard Williams, Bernard Harper and A.F. Bradeen, each prayed for different types of first responders: paramedics, emergency medical technicians, hospital staffs, firefighters, law enforcement and Red Cross volunteers. They also prayed for the families of first responders.
Hayes recalled recent events that showed the need for first responders.
“We had two bomb threats and a drive-by shooting at one of our schools. It made a lot of news and a lot of noise, but our first responders were right there on the scenes,” the pastor said. “No lives were lost and no bombs went off. No children were hurt or injured, and that’s what we hear about. Most of the time we don’t hear about what our first responders go through and deal with.”
Bradeen said, “We remember that our police force, our EMT and everyone in authority needs prayer. As they sit at the fire station, wait in their cruiser or wait for that call, we should pray for such people.”
Deidre Harper said, “I came because it’s needed in the community and there are people in our community who don’t get enough prayer.”
There was also music and singing. Hinesville Police Officer James Williams, who sings at different community functions, led attendees in a song. And the Red Club of Fort Stewart Red Cross sang “God Bless America.”