Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Tenth Anniversary of 911

It’s hard to believe I watch the twin towers fall to the ground in a pile of dust ten years ago today. That morning I left my house to take a walk for exercise. The girls were in school and it was a beautiful day. I got back around 9 AM and got a call to turn the television on because a plane had crashed into one of the towers. I watched the replay of the first hit in total disbelief, thinking this was an accident and something was wrong with the pilot. Not long after the second tower was hit. Panic an anxiety set in fast. Phones stopped working, some television stations lost their power or reception. No one seemed to know what was happening or why.

All I could think about was that my girls were in school and what should I do. It was impossible trying to communicate with the schools with all the calls they had to handle. I discussed the options with a friend and we decided to let the kids finish out the day. She ended up going to get her daughter and my older daughter in the afternoon. It was an ordeal. Traffic was horrendous because the traffic lights were working. It took her a while to get there and then they wouldn’t give her my daughter. Finally, she worked it out where they released my daughter to her and it took them forever to get home.

I was relieved when my whole family was home that night, but we kept hearing stories of people who were there, at the towers. If you didn’t know anyone personally who was there, then you knew someone who did. My daughter said that her newly wed, teacher’s husband was working there. My brother told us his neighborhood travel agent was working there. A friend of mine was consoling her best friend because her husband was there that day. It was just too much to take in.

We were bombarded with news of the attacks for days on end. I couldn’t watch any more because my heart was racing from anxiety. Every morning, for months, helicopters flew around the city at dawn. That was the sound I would wake up to. There were also other attacks on 911. There was no feeling safe any more. Who knew if other attacks were minutes, hours or days away?

This week many show have been revisiting 911, showing footage, talking to survivors and relatives of victims. It was like reliving the whole thing again. I am sick at the fact that they are not allowing first responders to attend today’s ceremony. These people literally risked their lives to save others and they tell them there is “no room for them?” Make room! No one sent them away when we were in crisis, but it’s okay to do it now?

I pray to God that this country never experiences anything like that ever again. We still have not gotten justice for those victims either. Yes Osama Bin Laden was finally killed, but the 5 co-conspirators have not been tried and punished. They sit in Cuba, in Guantanamo Bay awaiting trial. The trial was in progress two years ago, but was postponed and is due to resume this month. Why on earth is it taking so long? No answers. Will the victims and their families ever get justice for their losses? This is a story I need to follow more closely.

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