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Lineman Appreciation Day celebrates ‘unsung heroes’

Pioneer Electric Cooperative’s Kevin Brogden, left, and Keith Crittenden, right, were among the nearly 100 linemen that took part in the Alabama Rural Electric Association’s Alabama Lineman Appreciation Day at Riverwalk Stadium Monday. (Submitted photo)

Pioneer Electric Cooperative’s Kevin Brogden, left, and Keith Crittenden, right, were among the nearly 100 linemen that took part in the Alabama Rural Electric Association’s Alabama Lineman Appreciation Day at Riverwalk Stadium Monday. (Submitted photo)

Electric utility providers from across the state gathered in Montgomery Monday to say thank you to the men and women who work to keep the power on.

Pioneer Electric Cooperative, Alabama Power and the state’s municipally owned electric utilities gathered at Montgomery’s Riverwalk Stadium to observe Alabama Lineman Appreciation Day. Nearly 100 of the state’s linemen were on hand for the event.

Alabama Lineman Appreciation Day celebrates the “unsung heroes” that work diligently to help guarantee the safety, reliability, comfort and convenience of electricity that families and businesses throughout the state rely on.

Linemen are the first ones on the front lines of a storm when the power goes out and often work with live electrical lines.

“Our linemen exemplify the dedication and heart for service that all citizens should strive to accomplish in their daily lives and careers,” said Pioneer Electric Cooperative Communications Specialist Casey Rogers. “Our linemen often put their lives in harm’s way and take time away from their own families to ensure that our members’ power needs are met. We are very proud of the linemen in our Pioneer family and others across the state.”

In 2014, the Alabama Legislature designated the first Monday in June as Alabama Lineman Appreciation Day. The joint resolution was sponsored by Rep. April Weaver of Alabaster, who took a special interest in the legislation because her grandfather was a lineman.

“You guys go above and beyond,” Weaver said. “When we are all safely in our homes asleep, you guys are out there protecting everyone, not just out here in our state but across the nation.”

The event was sponsored by Alabama Rural Electric Association.

Speakers included Alabama Rural Electric Association (AREA) President Fred Braswell, Representative April Weaver, State Emergency Management Agency Director Art Faulkner, AREA Senior Manager of Safety and Loss Control Michael Kelley and others.