Posted by Faye Bell on September 11, 2011 at 20:56:16:
Today marks a day in our nation's history -- that 10 years ago our values were attacked, our freedom was threatened, and our resolve was questioned. It's a day when the twin towers in New York City were destroyed by airplanes used as missiles by cowards and agents of evil spirited-men, and we as a nation were almost paralyzed.
I think almost all of us can remember that day and what we were doing when we first heard the news. My first thought was "could this be real", or have I turned the TV on in the middle of movie? Then I kind of panicked inside as the thought came to me -- American Airlines, Boston. Were Mickey (Beau Wilkes in GWTW) and Barbara OK? Although Mickey was retired at the time from American Airlines, Barbara was still flying and her home base was the Boston airport. I went to the phone immediately and was so relieved to find out Barbara was not flying that day.
You, too, could probably tell me where you were and what you were doing when you heard about the first tower being hit by an airplane. And, then we heard the news that our nation had been attacked. We had all lived in such a safety zone in our minds; because we had convinced ourselves that no one could have the guts to come on "our soil" and try to attack us. Then our hearts melted as news came that not one, but two airliners carrying innocent non-combative citizens -- were skyjacked and used as suicide missiles to fly into the twin towers. Now we knew that thousands of lives could be lost; lives of other non-combative and unsuspecting citizens. Not military personnel who were trained for battle, but innocent men, women, and children. People who had no idea they were hated so much by terrorists whose goal was to destroy them. It wasn't military forces against our nation's military forces, but men who had decided their number one goal was to destroy as many US civilians as they could. And, then, came the news that two other airliners had been skyjacked and more lives would be lost.
These terrorists saw liberty and thought they saw weakness. As a nation and as individuals we stood paralyzed at the realization that we had become so vulnerable, so oblivious, and so careless as to let the unthinkable and unimaginable come to us on our own soil. If we had never thought about it before, we suddenly were brought to the realization that none of us are immune to disaster - we may think and sometimes act as if we are, but know we are not!
So many of us learned that focusing on the things that are really important in our lives would help us get through this awful time. Regardless of how close we were physically to the events that happened that day, we realized that many of those things in our lives that were so important prior to then, just didn't have much significance any longer. We also learned THAT LIFE CAN END AT ANY MOMENT, that BAD THINGS HAPPEN TO GOOD PEOPLE, and that BEING VULNERABLE IS PART OF BEING ALIVE. We were reminded that BAD PEOPLE FULL OF HATE AND CONTEMPT FOR AMERICANS DO EXIST, and THAT IDEAS AND WORDS HOLD GREAT POWER OVER OTHERS. We NOW knew it to be true that people can inspire and educate other people to commit acts of hatred, and at the same time affect generations for years to come.
Although the terrorists used plane 'bombs' to destroy Americans, they were no match against people who have learned that the human spirit is so resilient. Post 9-11 days will never be the same as days before the attack, but life will continue and we will learn from the actions of that horrible day, and move on.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who lost loved ones that day. Their memories will live on in our hearts and will help us to never allow ourselves to feel the freedom we have in the United States of America is FREE -- it is earned, respected, and cherished by those of us who realize FREEDOM IS NEVER FREE!