A Citizen of the United States , September 11th- A Day of Victims and Heroes
The sun was very bright that day as I drove my older son to 1st grade, chatter filling the car as he talked about all the things he was going to do at school and about hockey that week. It was to be an ordinary day it seemed. I dropped him off at school and drove on to complete the errands of the day. My husband at the time was to go to base for paperwork for his reserve duty that he was to perform that weekend when I turned the radio on. Where there was usually idle chatter and music, there was panic and repeated silence. It was hard to make out what was going on at first, as everyone seemed to chime in at once when talk would resume. When I finally came to realize what it was that they were saying, it was very hard to wrap my mind around the thought of terror on our own soil. However, that was the events that were unfolding as I listened to ABC and Fox news. A plane had slammed into the World Trade Center in New York City. I rushed home to tell my husband but he already knew. He was being told to report to base immediately. Not only frightening for him and myself, but for the rest of the nation who were receiving the same phone calls that fateful morning. As I walked around the house listening to him get ready to leave, the second plane crashed into the other tower. It was extremely surreal to watch the billow of smoke rise up from the window panes of the once tall and ominous buildings. Then in a flash a new vision popped up on the screen of our television set, the pentagon was in flames, then a field in Pennsylvania. Our nation was under siege and we were helpless for the first time in our nation’s history. There was no siren, no hurricane warning to alert us to danger as in natural disaster. It was terror in a instant, destruction that had no rhyme nor reason just intent of mass chaos and turmoil as far reaching as anything ever felt on this great nations soil.
As I watched the television, holding on to the baby and wanting to go and hold my 1st grader, I remember seeing the people running down the streets of New York. I remember seeing the people pouring out of the Pentagon and coming out of the subways of D.C. ,watching the emergency vehicles covering the fields in rural Pennsylvania knowing that there was no one walking away and that there would be no tears of joy coming from that field today or any day. Then I started to think, there were heroes there that day. As the news started to report of the passengers that had divert that plane from hitting targets in Washington D.C, maybe there will be tears of joy there. Maybe there will be tears of joy all around this great nation. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but eventually people will see the good that rest of the nation saw that day. The people that ran into the buildings to pull others from the wreckage, those who stated the famous “ Let’s Roll” and took a plane down knowing that their lives were over the minute they made that decision. Those are the things that we need to remember from that day. We should never forget the destruction, or the pain. However, what we should let live in our memories are the heroes of that day. Those who lived and who lost their lives in the passion for this great nation we call home. We may be divided, we may be lost, but we are still America. We still hold the torch of Freedom that so many long to feel, taste, and cling to. We are still the land of the plenty were dreams are not only dreams but realities to many. I remember that so many lives were changed that day including mine. These are events that change the shape of our country. We can choose to stand beside them or we can choose to turn from them. My choice is to remember all those who stood strong that day and were not deterred by the self-righteous. That they came in blazing with courage and strength, knowing that they too might lose their lives while fighting the falling rubble and unsteady buildings. That day was a day of victims and heroes both. May they both live on in the memory of all that read history.