Honestly, it really doesn’t matter where I was or what I thought five year ago today. I wasn’t in New York City or Washington DC. I didn’t have a loved one die as a victim or a hero. I have no personal connection whatsoever with any of the 3,000 individuals who lost their lives on that day, so in that sense my thoughts and my reaction mean very little. But I still thought I would share my thoughts, for whatever it is worth.
The more interesting thing is not where I was that day, but where I was supposed to be.
My wife and I had our wedding scheduled for Sept. 8, 2001. We were to fly to West Palm Beach, FL on Sept. 9 and stay there for a week. Instead we moved our wedding up to Sept. 1. We left for Florida on the 2nd for our honeymoon and came back on the 8th.
I found out later that several of the hijackers were living in and around West Palm Beach at the time. I have no idea if I ever saw them there or possibly even flew with them on our return trip.
On the morning of Sept. 11, I woke up with a nasty one-day stomach virus. I was busy lying on the couch throwing up. My wife called work for me to let them know I would not be in that day. Then she weht outside to take out the trash. Because we had a good bit of trash, she drove my truck to carry it to the dumpster. When she came in she looked pale and told me to turn on the TV. She had heard that planes had hit the World Trade Center over the radio.
I lay there on the couch the rest of the day, alternating between throwing up and staring aghast at the sites on the television screen. I don’t remember too much else from that day, simply shock and wondering who had done this.
I do remember the next few days at work. At that time I worked at a newspaper and we had TV’s on all through the office. I remember the dread of waiting for the next attack to come, waiting for any kind of information, waiting to know who could possibly do this.
Five years have passed since Muslim terrorists hijacked our planes and crashed them into our buildings. They struck the first two blows that day, but within hours we began to fight back and that continues to this day.
It’s nice to remember those days when everyone was “proud to be an American.” When no one even considered the fact that our government was responsible for the deaths and if someone had suggested it, they would have gotten a “very harsh” response.
I don’t expect everyone to cheer the President today or stand behind his policy decisions. It is no more or less patriotic to agree or disagree with someone in power. I simply hope that we wil cheer our nation today, that we will stand behind our troops, our firemen and our police officers. I pray that we will remember the sacrifice of many on that day, who displayed what Jesus called the greatest love – laying their life down for a friend or even a stranger.
If anyone would like to share their story or memories, please feel free to do so.
May God bless America.