My parent’s generation had a defining moment and they could all ask and answer the question”Where were you when you learned Pearl Harbor had been bombed?” The generation just before me, a few to 10 years older would likely recall and know the answer to “Where were you when JFK was shot, and you learned he had been killed?”
For many of us that defining tragic God awful moment occurred eight years ago on September 11, 2001…………….Where were you when you heard about a plane hitting the World Trade Center, and then a second, and then the Pentagon, and then the flight that went down in PA? A day that is now simply referred to as 9/11, and no more need be said, because for all Americans and most of the world we know what it defines.
I live more than a thousand miles from where this tragedy struck, and I knew no one personally that died or was injured, but I still can tell you vividly where I was and how I felt.
I had a home-room mom’s meeting that morning at the kid’s school. Nick was just 3, not yet in school, and Adrienne and Caitie were 8, and in 3rd grade. Caitie wasn’t feeling well, so I left her home to rest while I was gone to my meeting, Nick in tow, for about an hour.
One mom got a phone call, her husband a pilot, but thankfully not flying that day had called to tell her that a plane had hit one of the WTC towers and while it at first seemed like an accident, within 21 minutes the second tower is hit, and it appears to be deliberate, and terror and shock sweep the news and our country.
Someone from the office comes in to tell us that Pentagon has been hit by a plane and that the students can released if parents want to take them home. I decide to head home with Nick, wanting more news, wanting to see what is really happening.
I listen to the CBS news on the radio on the way home, and I hear that they are worried the South Tower is going to collapse……….I call my dad, knowing he’s watching the news, I ask him what he can see, he says it’s unreal and that it’s on fire in the middle of the building and it’s scary.
I arrive home, shuttle Nick and Cait to my bedroom to watch cartoons and turn on the news to just see the South WTC tower collapse, I can’t believe my eyes……….it’s like some awful scene from a movie, only it’s real, with real people screaming and running and the reality is just too awful to watch.
I sat there and I cried, and called my husband, who was listening to it on the radio, their office had no cable, and they saw some online. I cried and called my dad back, and asked him who could do this………………
I was mesmerized by the news, and after a two days or so, round the clock news and tragedy Kevin made me turn it off and promise to stop watching it.
Maybe it was because we’d just buried Kevin’s mom two weeks prior to this and my heart was heavy and sad, maybe because I , like everyone else, felt it was just the most brutal senseless act of terrorism, for whatever reason, this day changed how I felt about my safety, my country’s safety and the people that hate us.
Eight years later, we still remember those who were killed by the evil acts of terrorism. I pray for their families and loved ones and friends. I pray for our nation that we may never see this on our land or any other again.
Take a moment and pause today, and hug your kids and Remember.