September 11, 2001 – a day that will live in infamy.
Everyone, including myself, remembers 9/11 as being a beautiful day. The only reason we remember this fact is the aftermath of the events that unfolded. Even the clear blue skies and perfect temperatures the rest of that day were darkened and disturbed by the horrible realization of what happened. What happened? Freedom was attacked, and in many cases taken.
I, like everyone, remember the events of that day vividly. I was a freshman in high school, and we were in 2nd period (gym class for me) outside walking around the track. I was walking with a friend, Mike Randall, when we were told the towers were both hit. Like everyone when they heard of the second tower being hit, the immediate realization was that we were under attack. We were pulled back into the school and brought into the locker room. I remember seeing Football Coach Perry watching the news on his television for my first view of the events.
I remember talking with a bunch of people in the hallway outside of the locker rooms, and I remember one girl having absolutely no clue what the Twin Towers were.
While sitting there waiting for the bell for the next class, the report came in that the Pentagon was attacked, and for us, the concern was now even more real. The attacks on the Towers showed us that American civilians were at risk. The attack on the Pentagon hit the military, it hit our defenses. For all we knew, it had crippled us and soon every plane we had would be nose-diving.
We had heard [false] reports of carbombs exploding all around Washington, D.C. so the worry and fear became amplified immediately as we tried to figure out what our own personal futures held for us.
In the United States, and the bulk of the world, this kind of foreign terrorism was unheard of… we were blindly comfortable in our ways, and feeling invincible. For most, Pearl Harbor was far too long of a way in the past, and we weren’t dealing with a military (per se) attack in this situation.
Schools ended up being released after we sat in class and watched the Towers collapse. As I started to walk home, there were fighter jets flying overhead accompanying what few planes were left in the air. My father showed up to pick me up and give me a ride home where I sat on the couch and stared helplessly at all of the views of the tower being hit and both collapsing. Watching the Pentagon burn away and fall in on itself, and watching the footage from the unbelievable hole in the ground in Shanksville, PA.
The following days were full of those blue skies which weren’t quite blue enough. I still remember vividly the day they returned the planes to other airports, moving them in bundles… it was the first time we’d seen aircraft in the sky for days, and even knowing they were moving them back, it was hard to get over the feeling that it was possible for those planes to be used for evil.
The following years, security changed, the War on Terror started, and lives have changed. There have been attacks in Spain and London, planned attacks all over.
We lost 3,120 lives as a result of the attacks on 9/11. Since that day, many have died from effects of that day. Many were left paralyzed and confined to a chair. Many were immortalized for their efforts to save, and others for their ability to survive and ride the towers down. Every soul affected that day, whether in the crashes, at the scenes, of relation, other sites which could be targets, surrounding areas, and the entire US which had to watch helplessly, we pray for you.
I pray for the soldiers of the coalition fighting the War on Terror… whatever nationality you may be. I pray for those attacked after 9/11. God bless those who fought back on Flight 93 and prevented another attack on a building or people. God bless the firefighters and police who selflessly risked their lives to save and comfort others. God bless the people who weren’t firefighters or police, regular citizens, who risked their own lives attempting to save others. God bless those who made it out, or fought to make it out and couldn’t. God bless those who were trapped in the Towers and couldn’t find an escape. God bless those who jumped to their death from the towers. God bless everyone lost in the War on Terror. God bless Freedom, and everyone who fights for it. God bless the enemy of our enemies.
If you’d like, leave a comment and let us know where you were when you found out.