Things to Think About on 9/11

  It was a Tuesday morning, much like any other Tuesday morning. It seemed like no matter where you lived, it was a beautiful, sunny late summer/early fall day. That is, until shortly before 9am when it seemed as if the world changed forever.
  Eight years ago, I was a producer at a television station in Virginia, preparing for the taping of my first children’s talk show of the new season the following day. I remember going into the newsroom to use an edit suite to view a tape for the show and seeing reports that a “small plane” had crashed into the World Trade Center in New York.
  Preoccupied with the work I needed to do, I thought “that’s weird”, and continued on into the editing room. A little while later, one of our anchors tapped on the glass and came in. He said, “Did you hear what happened?” I told him I had heard about the small plane crashing into the building—he shook his head and said, “It was a jet, and another one just hit the other tower.”
  I was stunned, but for some reason, I still wasn’t thinking “terrorism”. Maybe I was just naïve, not willing to let my mind go to that dark place.
I quickly finished my work in the edit suite and when I walked into the newsroom, it was like nothing I’d ever seen before. People running around, reporters and producers making plans to travel to New York—I felt like I was watching a movie, because surely this wasn’t real.
  Not being a news producer myself, I made my way back to the production office. Of course, televisions were everywhere and non-news people were standing around watching in horror at what was unfolding. By the time I got back to my desk, the Pentagon was hit.
  It seemed like the news was getting worse by the minute. When the first tower fell, I remember a big guy, who was a director, saying, “I can’t take any more”.  He walked away from the TV on his desk. Not known for being squeamish, I guess the knowledge that those buildings were still filled with people was too much to bear. In an instant, valuable lives were no more.
  I don’t remember at all what the show I was working on that day was about—probably some inane topic of some sort. In the years since, there’s much that I remember about that day that I continue to think about even now.
  I think about the families of those who never made it home that day. One in particular–a young woman named Melissa. I never met her, but she graduated from my high school after I did. I know she had a beautiful voice because I heard her sing in the musical “Godspell” years ago when she was still in school. Her grief-stricken father appeared on the evening news as he searched in vain for his daughter.  Melissa worked on the 102nd floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center.
  I think about the passengers on United Flight 93 that crashed in Shanksville, PA. Those brave men and women collectively decided to go down fighting evil, knowing that their own fates were sealed. They were the first heroes of the War on Terror and saved what surely would have been many lives on the ground.
  I think about those currently fighting the War on Terror (yes, it’s still going on, contrary to some opinions). God bless the brave men and women in uniform that defend our freedom in foreign lands, while helping others to secure it for themselves.
  Most of all, I think about freedom and how important it is to fight for it whenever and wherever it’s under attack. Like those two towers that seemed as if nothing could ever take them away, freedom is fragile. It should always be handled with care and vigilance, for much like the Twin Towers, it can crumble before our very eyes.

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One response

  1. […] of the worst terrorist attack on American soil.  A year ago, I started this blog with the posting “Things to Remember on 9-11”.  In the years since that horrible day, much has been written about, spoken of, argued over, etc. when […]

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