‘It’s always in our memory’: Annual Step Up for Heroes event honors the lives taken on 9/11

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) – Exactly twenty years ago Saturday on 9/11, almost 3,000 people lost their lives, and the world changed.

For those old enough to remember, the memory of where they were on September 11th, 2001 is still fresh.

“I was in fifth grade, she was in fourth grade, so we were in our school classrooms,” Taylor Suess of Sioux Falls said. “And I remember my teacher wheeling in a TV and we watched what was going on and kind of watching all the follow-up events the rest of the day. And then going home with my family and watching the news coverage as more and more information kept coming out.”

And now 20 years later, they still remember the nearly 3,000 lives lost that day.

“It’s always in our memory and that all of the victims and all of the people who sacrificed their lives, you know, are still being remembered and that we’re carrying on that legacy today,” Taylor Suess said.

That’s why Taylor and Dani Suess came out to the 7th annual Step Up for Heroes event. They wanted to remember 9/11 while also honoring their own family member who is a part of Sioux Falls Fire Rescue.

“Just being able to take some time this morning to really think about, you know, the people who served that day,” Taylor Suess said. “The people, their bravery, their courage and to be able to just take some time on a Saturday morning, especially, you know, to take some quiet time and reflect on that.”

Each year the Sioux Falls Firefighter’s Association hosts this event with a fundraising stair climb.

“110 flights of stairs that we climb and that’s in remembrance of the World Trade Centers at a 110 flights tall,” Ian Stark, Principal Officer of the Sioux Falls Firefighter’s Association said.

The stair climb raises money for the Step Up for Heroes memorial fund, which helps people impacted by fires here locally.

“We want to take that event, that tragic event, 20 years ago and turn it into something where we can raise money for the community and turn it into positives for those around us,” Stark said.

“Just remember everybody who lost their lives and just remember and honor the firefighters even here in Sioux Falls, all the hard work they do and the police department,” Dani Suess said.

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