"Where were you when....?"
That seems to be the question of the day each September 11. I was at work. The boss was out of town and so the office was more relaxed than normal and we were all standing around chatting before we started our day. It wasn't even 8:00 a.m. (Texas time) yet.
A co-worker's husband called and told us to turn on the TV because a plane had hit the World Trade Center. We scoffed and thought it must be a mistake... an awful accident. It wasn't and we, like the rest of the world, watched in horror as the second plane hit, the towers fell. None of us cried. I think it was just to shocking, too unbelievable to think that airplanes had hit the Pentagon and the World Trade Center -- and then hearing about the plane that had gone down in Pennsylvania. It was my job at that point to call each of my sales reps and find out where they were (many were traveling and now stranded) and assure them that the company was there for them. I remember thinking that my brother in law was on his way to Baltimore (I don't know why I new that) and hoping, praying that his plane wasn't affected and had landed safely somewhere because at that point, it was still unclear where the planes had originated or were going.
That day, like December 7 for my grandparents' generation and November 22 for my parents' generation is the day that will always be that "where were you when...?" day.
There are so many things about that day that I will never forget.
I will never forget that I was running late to work that day and how pretty it was outside... it was a crisp, clear fall day.
I will never forget seeing that second plane heading toward the World Trade Center and then watching in horror as it hit.
I will never forget watching the towers fall.
I will never forget the images of people, covered in dust, walking away -- just walking.
I will never forget those who ran in as others ran out.
I will never forget the Falling Man.
I will never forget the sound of all those planes flying over trying to land at DFW as American airspace was closed.
I will never forget the sound of utter silence broken by F-14s doing flyovers.
I will never forget the seemingly unending sound of bagpipes playing Amazing Grace at the funerals of those who died.
I will never forget I am honored and blessed to live in the United States where I have the ability to pray and worship without fear.
I will never forget that no matter her flaws, America is still the greatest country in the world and a beacon of light and hope to the world.
I will never forget....