“Time is passing. Yet, for the United States of America, there will be no forgetting September the 11th. We will remember every rescuer who died in honor. We will remember every family that lives in grief. We will remember the fire and ash, the last phone calls, the funerals of the children.” —former President George W. Bush
It was a day just like any other; people boarding their flights to travel across the country while others entered buildings to go to work. People were going about their lives thinking about going home at the end of the day to eat dinner with their families, but 16 years ago today the world changed for SOO many people. People lost their family members, their friends, their neighbors; men and women risked their lives running straight into collapsing buildings to try to save as many people as they could and not all of them made it back out.
We are all affected in some way by the 9/11 attacks. I’ll never forget waking up that morning; I was 9 years old, my brother was 3 and my youngest brother was only a few months old. I was getting ready for school and my mom had the news on and she was crying. I didn’t know then what a huge impact this day would make on our lives. I was old enough to know that something bad had happened, but I couldn’t understand why someone would want to do that to us, not when the United States was so great. I remember hoping that my aunts and uncle and cousins were ok because I knew that they lived back east. I remember my mom calling her sisters to see if they were ok and THANKFULLY they weren’t in the city. In the midst of tragedy, we stood up as a Nation and rebuilt as a stronger more UNITED front. We showed the terrorists that attacked us that we could rebuild and that even though we suffered a great loss that day, the outcome would be bigger and stronger than what we were before.
Two years ago, my fiancé and I had the opportunity to visit the 9/11 Memorial and museum while we were in New York. The museum itself was one of the saddest things I have ever experienced in my life. To see the remnants of what used to be the twin towers; to see the steel beam standing there in the middle of the room with missing posters and prayers and firehouse numbers of all those that were lost; and to hear the stories of those who never made it home that day. Listening to the voices of those people who never made it off the plane who had left messages for their loved ones on the ground…Listening to the messages that were left by the families on the ground desperately hoping that it wasn’t their loved ones on that plane. It was soo heartbreaking. I cried even when I didn’t think I had any tears left in me. Every time I’m in New York, I have to stop by the 9/11 Ground Zero Memorial to take a moment and stand in silence and pay my respect to those who lost their lives.
To this day when I think about the tragedy we faced, it still makes me angry to know that someone would do this to us. It makes me sad to think of all those innocent people who died and for all the first responders who didn’t make it out of the wreckage. Just writing this post makes me tear up thinking about it all. It’s weird to think that there are people alive who will never know what the New York skyline looked like with 2 towers standing tall or who weren’t even alive when all of this took place and have to learn about it from a history book. I am proud to be an AMERICAN, but on September 11, I am even more proud. I’m thankful that the United States has such a strong backbone to lean on and that we don’t let an attack like this define who we are as a Nation. This is truly a day that we will NEVER FORGET.
“If we learn nothing else from this tragedy, we learn that life is short and there is no time for hate.” —Sandy Dahl, wife of Flight 93 pilot Jason Dahl
If you ever get the chance, you HAVE to visit the Memorial and the Museum as each will affect you in some way. I think it’s a great opportunity to pay respects and to learn more about the day that we remember every year. If you’d like to learn more about OWTC then you can click here but if you’d like to visit the One World Observatory which the top of the World Trade Center and see the most breathtaking views check this out.