With 911 remembrance events coming up this weekend, I wanted to show you the efforts I have taken as your Mayor to honor our Veterans, Police and elders as much as possible.
I have issued proclamations in support of these events and give speeches to inspire our community to remember their sacrifice by striving to be better. Below are a few of my past speeches if you are interested:
Veterans Day 2021
I am honored to be here today recognizing the service and sacrifice of our veterans.
What is so powerful for me about this day is that it highlights the virtues associated with service and reflects on the sacrifice…sometimes the ultimate sacrifice; that comes with that service.
The personal Qualities and character traits of “soldiers”…and I use that as an all encompassing term for those who serve… have been passed down through millennia. These qualities and traits form a moral foundation that serves to protect a country in ways beyond the battlefield.
As a veteran and Christian, one of the most profound stories I ever heard, highlighting the bravery of a soldier is the 40 Martyrs of Sebaste
The story goes…In 320 AD the Roman Emperor Licinius ordered all soldiers to obey and worship pagan gods. In Sevaste, an area under the authority of Governor Agricola, forty soldiers who openly confessed themselves as Christians, refused to offer the sacrifice as ordered by the emperor.
The Governor needed these soldiers…they were some of the best, but they must be brought into line. He was determined to make them see reason. The forty were told, to comply or prepare for torture and death.
“To disgrace the name of our Lord Jesus Christ is more terrible still,” replied the men. Angered, the governor had guards seize the men and on a cold winter day… strip them naked and confined them to the center of a frozen lake just outside the town. They were told “You may come ashore when you are ready to deny your faith.”
On March 9th, 320 AD, the men stood shivering on the frozen lake as the sun went down.
Governor Agricola was sure the bitter cold of evening would change their minds…. And if not, he thought they would be convinced by the heated baths of warm water he had guards place around the lake.
As they froze to death that night the prayer was: “Lord, 40 have come forth to fight for thee. Grant that 40 may gain the victory!”
Not long after one of the forty crawled from the ice towards the Governor. Guards’ ran forward and took him to a bath to save him… But the heat was too much of a shock to his frozen body and he died.
In response, a Centurion guard seeing the bravery and courage of the remaining 39, Confessed Christ, striped off his armor and joined the others… they all perished that night.
I mentioned that story because it is an example of the noble traits of a solider, qualities of which have been personified by many through military service in this country, since our founding. On this day, Veterans Day, we must never forget it is ….Our responsibility…. to remember…. to honor…to pass on these traditions and moral principles to the next generation. Thank you.
Memorial Day 2021, Speech
Today we take a moment to pay tribute to the brave men and women who paid the ultimate price for this country…and us…
To me this Memorial Day is especially appropriate as we exit a time in which the exercise of our freedoms was challenged in many ways.
As with all major events, we must guard against those who…in the face of uncertainty, and hardship…would trade God given liberties for security.
The 2nd wisest man who walked the planet once said… “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.”
His point was that all the activity of a man during his lifetime is lost in the grander scheme of things and will soon be forgotten… and once forgotten…repeated.
And this is the very reason of why we choose to remember the fallen on Memorial Day…not only to remember what they did, but to prevent the need for others to pay the same price in the future.
So on this somber day…a day in which we honor the sacrifice made by so many…we must strive to truly honor their efforts and life, by remembering… and by defending the freedoms that sacrifice provided us.. and to never let freedom slip away.
Thank you.Ketchikan Gateway Borough Mayor Rodney Dial
Police Memorial Day 2022
Its my privilege to be here today to say a few words regarding police memorial day, to recognize one of our local fallen, and to honor those that continue to serve every day to make our community a better place to live.
Romans Chapter 13 reads… Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good.
Law enforcement is a noble profession conducted by a certain breed of men and women who realize the cost of that decision. They assume that risk, and are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice if needed, because of a love of others and community. Today we honor the ultimate sacrifice of some and the daily risk assumed by others… praying always for their safety.
So we thank those that came before and served and to the Officers here today and the others working at this moment to keep us safe I challenge you to:
Give justice to the weak and the fatherless; maintain the right of the afflicted and the destitute. Rescue the weak and the needy; and deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” Psalm 82:3-4
Stay safe, we need you…Thank youKetchikan Gateway Borough Mayor Rodney Dial
Friends in Ketchikan, as we approach 9/11 this coming weekend, please join me in honoring our Veterans, Police and elders as much as possible. Sincerely, Rodney Dial