Sunday, September 11, 2011

we will never forget!

today we remember 9/11...ten years later. i can't believe it's been 10 years. i remember exactly where i was that day. i was living and working in chicago and i was running late to work. i took a cab instead of the bus and when i arrived to the office, no one was there. our gym was accessible through internal stairs near my office and finally i heard people talking. i went up to the gym and found everyone standing around the treadmills watching the TVs. then someone told me..."a plane crashed into the world trade center."

with my own eyes, i then watched the 2nd plane hit. before the first tower fell, we were evacuated from our building (only 4 blocks from the Sears tower) and we ran to the parking garage where my boss was parked. along the way, we saw tons of people running north towards the river. as we ran i remember the feeling of panic that came over me. i wasn't sure about having my boss drive me home since i lived in a 20-story apartment building on lake shore drive, but after awhile i decided it was ok to be there. i got home and watched in horror replays of the towers falling and the crashes in PA and the pentagon. i watched the TV the entire day as the story unfolded and news reports flooded in. i spoke to several friends and we all couldn't believe our country had been attacked. the day before 9/11 i had just returned from a trip to dallas to attend a friend's wedding and suddenly i was afraid to fly. it was only a few weeks later i had to go to NYC for work. i remember staying wide awake the whole trip watching everything, when normally i would have snoozed for the early morning flight. i will also never forget the smoldering ash still in the air when we flew over manhattan to land at laguardia.

i worked in nyc from august 2002-august 2003 at 4 world financial center. every single day i walked by the world trade center site. and every single day i walked by it, i felt the vast loss of life and destruction. i was there for the first 9/11 memorial and i will never forget the tears my coworkes choked back when faced with memories from that day.

9/11 changed everything in this country. fear replaced comfortable. anger replaced contentment. but heroes joined the ranks of our military to rid the world of tyranny and terrorism and thousands have proudly served and sacrificed since. i think about the many lives that have been lost in this war. in particular our friend matt who died in a training exercise when his jet collided with another over the pacific ocean. if that accident had not happened, matt would have deployed to the war zone just a few months later. i am humbled the men and women of the armed services willingly go into harm's way to carve out a path of freedom for me, my children, and this country. because they serve, we stay safe.

in just about 7 weeks my husband will join the ranks of those who are serving and have served in operation enduring freedom for a 1-year deployment to afghanistan. we will miss him terribly but we are proud he has an opportunity to serve his country in this capacity. 10 years later this war is still going on and many people have an opinion about that. i will not interject my thoughts on the subject and debate it here. my husband has been called to serve and he will do so with honor, commitment and sacrifice. for that, we are proud.

may all those heroes of 9/11 always be remembered. WE WILL NEVER FORGET! i am grateful to all of those who have served in military and civil service since. may God bless you here on earth and those angels now in heaven.