Local agencies plan to recognize first responders with free dinners as the anniversary of the 9/11 attack approaches.
Operation Bugle Boy and American Legion Post 5 will host Patriot Sunday 2018, a complimentary chicken dinner with all the fixings for active Jefferson City-area first responders — including emergency medical services, firefighters, police officers and emergency volunteers — and their families.
The dinner is scheduled from 4-7 p.m. Sept. 9 at the American Legion Hall, 1423 Tanner Bridge Road in Jefferson City.
"Patriot Sunday is a way for our community to show the local heroes how we feel about them," Operation Bugle Boy President Chris Jarboe said.
Operation Bugle Boy is a nonprofit organization that honors veterans, soldiers and first responders.
Five hundred tickets are available for the event, which will feature entertainment by Gary B and the Kools, a band made up of retired first responders. Tickets are required for all participants except children ages 5 and younger. Ticket holders may dine in or carry out.
All tickets, available at Legends Bank, 130 E. McCarty St., have received sponsors, so the event will be free of charge to first responders and their families.
David and Peggy Beamer, parents of United Flight 93 hero Todd Beamer, sponsored 17 of the tickets — one for each year since their son died fighting the terror attack in the skies above rural Pennsylvania.
Jeff and Conny Pugliese sponsored 20 tickets. Sgt. Jeff Pugliese serves with the Watertown, Massachusetts, Police Department and received the Congressional Medal of Valor for his efforts to bring to justice the 2013 Boston Marathon bombers.
"This support is a reflection of the admiration and respect sponsors have for the men and women who help keep us safe and make it possible to go about our daily lives, often at the risk of their own lives," Jarboe said.
The first 150 first responders in the door for the dinner will receive a gift bag.