On Sept. 11, I attended a cross-denominational prayer service hosted by the Willmar Area Faith at Work organization. Nine local churches united at the Willmar Civic Center to participate in this prayer service.
People from both Willmar and the surrounding communities came together for the purpose of remembering the 9/11 event that happened in our country 10 years ago, while also recognizing the role public safety played in this catastrophe.
I was moved!
Although I am both grateful and thankful, it wasn't the offering of approximately $37,600, of which 100 percent was given to local public safety groups, that moved me. It wasn't the phenomenal music that moved me. It wasn't the message delivered by various pastors that moved me, even though they were all quite good. I agree as one pastor stated, "Instead of looking at our differences, we should focus and build on our similarities." Even if we don't agree on our varied religious, ethnic, cultural, or economic views, we can start with just being human and build from there.
However, what really moved me was the support I felt coming from the gathering of approximately 3,000 citizens from Willmar and the surrounding communities. I cannot express enough appreciation for the support shown by those who attended. I can only state that we hope to repay that support by continuing our efforts in providing all citizens with fair and impartial law enforcement services.
I am certain my colleagues from local public safety entities -- Willmar Fire, Willmar Ambulance, Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office, Kandiyohi County Emergency Management, etc. -- would all agree that knowing we have community support gives us the necessary strength needed to serve the public in times of crisis.
Willmar Chief of Police