Remembering 9/11 Ten Years Later

As a kid I remember adults talking about where they were and what they were doing the day John F. Kennedy was assassinated. The same holds true the day Neil Armstrong walked on the moon.

Ten years ago today our country was attacked by terrorists. Nearly 3,000 people died in New York, DC and Pennsylvania. Like most people, I remember where I was and what I was doing. However what hit home recently for me was my eleven year old’s recollection of that day. This is what he wrote recently for a class project whereby he was asked to write a news story about an important event in his life.

“It was 9/11/01. Ten days after my birthday. It was the day when the twin towers exploded. When my mom heard the news she fell on her knees crying because my dad was on a plane from Manhattan to Florida. Then she got a call and was happy when she found out my dad was still alive. I would say that was the scariest day of my life!”

I was actually flying from Palm Beach to Laguardia. Someone in the seat across from me had called home from the air phone and was told that there was a terrorist attack in New York. It was right around 9 AM, so there weren’t a lot of details at that time. A couple more people called down to the ground and we began to get sketchy reports about what was happening. Talk started flying around about airplanes crashing into buildings and a couple of us started to wonder if we were safe. Just then, the pilot got on the PA and said “There has been a terrorist attack in New York. We are safe and in control of the aircraft, but this flight is being diverted to Atlanta”.

Hartsfield International was a zoo when we landed. Everyone was heading in the same direction – out! I found a rental car (thankfully) even though I stood in line for two hours. I remember the 8-hour drive home and seeing people on the side of the road waving flags. The way we came together as a country was breath taking. We need to remember 9/11 often. We need to embrace our neighbors like we did that day and the days that followed. Some people will stick their heads in the sand and pretend nothing has changed. Others like Scott Heiferman, Co-Founder & CEO of Meetup will start great companies that promote the the connections made post-9/11. What will you do? God bless America!!