PHOTO: Rutherford County leaders joined the National EMS Memorial Service members in remembering 72 paramedics and emergency medical services paramedics who died in the line of duty last year. Agencies participating included Rutherford County Emergency Medical Services, Rutherford County Emergency Management Agency, Rutherford County Fire & Rescue, Murfreesboro Fire & Rescue, Smyrna Fire Department, La Vergne Fire Department, Eagleville Fire Department, Tennessee Highway Patrol, Rutherford County Sheriff’s Office, Murfreesboro Police Department, Smyrna Police Department and La Vergne Police Department.
Vice President Rachel Tester of the National EMS (Emergency Medical Services) Memorial Service said the memorial honors 72 paramedics and EMTs who died in the line of duty last year.
“All of them chose to stand up and serve,” Tester said of the paramedics and EMTS who gave their lives to service. “Seventy-two didn’t come home this year.”
Board director Jim Vitaletti said many of the paramedics responded to transport COVID patients and later died of COVID.
“How they lived is important,” Vitaletti said of the fallen paramedics and emergency medical technicians.
Family members of the paramedics and EMTs who died are invited to the memorial service the weekend of July 22-24 in Arlington, Va.
“They are so happy we are not forgetting their loved ones,” Vitaletti said.
Rutherford County Mayor Bill Ketron, Public Safety Director Chris Clark and EMS Assistant Director Steve Hart welcomed the memorial and the National EMS Memorial Service members.
A caravan of emergency responders accompanied the memorial from the Embassy Suites at Medical Center Parkway through Rutherford County. Emergency responders showed their support by emergency vehicles at the Interstate 24 overpasses.
The memorial was constructed in Dallas. It is being transported in the Moving Honors event to Washington, D.C., for the National EMS Memorial Service in an ambulance donated by Global Medical Response.