Friday, September 11, 2009
It is hard to believe it was 8 years ago that the horrible terrorist attack was taken upon the USA. I remember the day vividly, as do many people. I was sitting at work when some one came running through the building telling people to turn on their radios, a plane hit the World Trade Center. Everyone thought, hmmm…some stupid person hit the Center in their little Buddy Holly plane. All the TV's in the building were tuning in. Employees throughout the building dropped everything and got to a TV. The employee break room was packed. We saw the second plane hit & couldn't believe what we were seeing. It was like some bad nightmare, or really good special effect movie. It seemed so unreal. How could something that awful really be happening? Employees looked at each other to see if they were seeing the same thing. Then we saw the Towers collapse. Faces of shock & disbelief filled the room. Complete silence. No one knew what to say or how to feel. It was so much for us to consume in our minds.
We somberly went back to work, with sadness in our hearts and minds coming to terms that this indeed was reality. Our country was under attack. We got back to our desks and listened to our radios. It was all you could hear through out the building. No office chatter, no keyboards plunking, no phones ringing. Then we heard that the Pentagon had been attacked. Fear was in us. What was next? How could this be happening? Who was responsible? We kept listening as the news came in and we just listened. Then the news of the 4th plane crashing in a field came through. It was unbelievable. Was it going to end? How many more planes? How many more people? And most of all where? Where would the next bad explosion occur?
Planes were grounded. People stranded at airports. Everyone's lives forever changed not matter how attached or detached to the people involved.
I went home for lunch and it was odd. Not one single plane in the sky. The sky was quiet and still. I work, live, and drive on the landing and take off path near the airport, so seeing and hearing planes is an every day, let alone every hour occurrence. It's a part of my daily life. To have it suddenly still was a strange reality of it all. I felt numb the rest of the day. How will I explain this to my children? How will I explain to them that such horror was true to life? How will their young minds even understand? How would this event impact them? I decided at home we would not have the TV on and I would keep the horror from my children at least for that day. Plus I could not watch it over and over and over. It was too horrible.
I contacted the airport and offered up my home to house displaced air travelers. It was the most I could do to help out. I felt we needed to pull together as a society and I needed to do my part. They declined and said things were taken care of but thanks for offering. All I could think of was how lucky I was to be with my family safe and how many people's family were suddenly torn apart and how many families were worried about loved ones stranded in airports around the world on what was supposed to be just an ordinary Monday morning.
The whole week following the Attack of 9/11 adults and children were waving flags on street corners and on bridges. Flags at businesses were at half mast. A feeling of coming together, patriotism, and how much we really do love our country was overwhelming.
As, we take a moment to reflect upon the events of Sept 11, 2001, let's remember that Freedom comes with a heavy price. When you see a soldier on the street, at the store, at the airport…make sure to say THANK YOU. They are making the ultimate sacrifice for the people of America. They put their lives at risk for freedom. They make sacrifices you and I could never know. They deserve respect and honor. THANK YOU!!