DILLON, S.C. (WBTW)– A South Carolina woman is putting together care packages for first responders ahead of the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
Kim Snyder is collecting snacks and drinks to give to police officers, firefighters, and EMTs. She has been volunteering at the VA office for years but now wants to do something good for first responders as well.
“To give back to those that need to be thanked,” Snyder said. “It’s time to pick up and start saying, ‘Look, thank you for what you’re doing.’”
Snyder said she remembers the fear following the attacks and being shocked by the bravery of the first responders who risked their lives to save people. She said the day had an impact on her that she will never forget.
“It was stunning to realize that terrorism was happening on US soil,” Snyder said. “When it rolls around every year, it’s a very dark, cold reminder of what took place.”
For years, Snyder has made beaded bracelets to remember fallen soldiers. She said she was inspired in part to help first responders after she met a retired NYPD detective who was there during the attack at a memorial event and gave him some to take home.
“He took the pin off his lapel and gave it to me,” Snyder said. “I will always cherish this pin and cherish him.”
The pin features the Twin Towers and an American flag. She said it was an interaction she could never forget. In addition to collecting food, Snyder has put together a scrapbook of news clippings from the attacks. She hopes to display it in the Dillon county courthouse.
“Just a way of giving back to Dillon County for the things that our first responders have done,” Snyder said. “It’s just a way of healing.”
Snyder said the best items to donate are snacks and drinks that can be prepared and eaten on the road. Shirt City USA will donate t-shirts for the care packages. Items can be dropped off at the Dillon County VA office or Dillon Christian Preschool. Snyder said part of what motivated her to organize the care packages was proving she is not defined by her disability.