When Santa Clarita residents dial 911, they can be sure that a group of men and women in uniform will be there to help in a matter of minutes.
These first responders, who risk their lives to save others, seek no recognition or reward.
So to show its appreciation, the Santa Clarita Valley community gathered Saturday to thank these brave men and women in person at the Canyon Theater Guild in Newhall. Sponsored by The Signal, and KHTS Radio, residents both heavily involved in the first responders community and those who simply wanted to say thank you, gathered at the theater for a rare opportunity to show their appreciation in person.
Uniformed officials from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the Los Angeles County Fire Department, and the California Highway Patrol were in attendance and shook hands with grateful community members.
After breaking bread with each other, attendees entered the theater to listen to homegrown musician, Savannah Burrows, perform for the first responders in attendance.
Even on a night when they were being recognized, they remained available to respond at a moment’s notice. While Burrows performed, you could hear the radios of firefighters broadcasting local incidents.
Local law enforcement was grateful to the community for putting on such an event and shook hands with anyone who wanted a word.
“We have a duty to uphold safety, service, and security and when some entity wants to put on this kind of tribute to law enforcement, it’s a really, really warm feeling,” said CHP Officer Josh Greengard in an interview with the Signal. “It is a tough world, but things like this make it better.
“You will get, ‘No thank you’s’ for months on end, but when you do get that ‘thank you,’ it is a warm feeling.”
Also in attendance to thank their local first responders, were City Councilman Bob Kellar, Congressman Steve Knight, Assemblyman Dante Acosta, City Councilman Bill Miranda and former mayor Cameron Smyth.
“Santa Clarita is just one of those communities,” Knight said, “that if something happens, everybody rallies around.”
And at the end of the night, when everyone returned to their homes, the first responders who were honored for the night returned to their service vehicles waiting for the next call to help someone in need.
“I was a cop for 18 years, so I know what they go through, I know what happens,” Knight said, “so you know, I have the highest regard for them.”