I will pause today to reflect and pay the due homage and honor to the
firefighters, police men and women, the rescued and the rescuers, the
fallen, the injured, the precious dear ones who perished, the still
grieving and the brave passengers of Flight 93.
I vividly remember September 11th 2001, getting ready for a plain old work day, the TV tuned to my morning talk show running back and forth through the house preparing to leave. At first I thought the events taking place was some kind of hoax, then I began shaking. The first tower of the trade center began to crumble, the TV commentators voices in a frenzy describing the indescribable. I could not digest what was happening so I picked up the phone to call the man in my life to grab hold of something steady. People jumping from the burning buildings to their death. The second tower came crashing down as we watched each terrifing scene unfold. A stunned silence ensued. Shock, disbelief and fear gripped hold of us.
Unable to get our equilibrium back, we clung together and camped out in front of the TV for weeks except to go to work, images replaying over and over again of the horrible events of September 11th and the aftermath and trying to make sense of the horror and calm our anxious fear state. The deadly quiet of no airliners or airplanes on decent to LAX over our home was disturbing, our tranquil 'safe' existence in Southern California suburbia had been banished. Red alerts, yellow and then none.
I visited the World War II memorial in Pearl Harbor two years ago. My father served in the Navy submarine service in Pearl Harbor during WWII and survived, he is 83 now. The experience highlighted for me another heavy price tag paid for our country's freedom in human lives.This experience finally comforted me some. I felt proud and grateful to be an American as I stood out over the deck of the Arizona and read the names of the fallen and those entombed in their watery grave. Service and sacrifice for me, for my freedoms.
The innocents who perished on 9/11 are heroes. They did not know they were at war as they did not chose to serve or offer to sacrifice their life in the war of terror. How much more precious is this 9/11 memorial remembrance of these citizen heroes, then? Remember them and never forget them.