This year, Boothbay Harbor Rotary Club has set Sept. 12 as the night to honor Hometown Heroes. The annual event, which thanks first responders and their spouses, will begin at 5:30 p.m. at Spruce Point Inn.
Rotarians Daren and Debbie Graves are chairing the event, which will include dinner and a talk by LifeFlight Executive Director Thomas Judge. Last year, the air emergency response service celebrated its 20th anniversary.
The dinner was started in 2002 to thank local first responders after the terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington, D.C. Rotarians Bob and Gloria Walter were the event’s first chairs. Two years later, the Graves took the helm and have been coordinating the event ever since.
Daren Graves said 14 departments in the region are honored at the dinner. These include local police, fire, EMS, communications, Coast Guard and State Police. He feels it’s important to have all the first responders, “our heroes,” together to honor them.
Sales of the tickets, which are $25, are contributed to Rotary’s Hometown Heroes Fund which uses the money to buy equipment for first responders. In the past, this has included AEDs (automated external defibrillators), vests, training and water pumps.
According to Daren Graves, last year’s dinner raised $2,000 and has helped Boothbay and Edgecomb fire departments buy radios not included in their annual budgets.