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Sunday, September 11, 2011

I remember...

On 9/11/01 I was a freshman in college. Because my classes didn’t start until the afternoon, I was working at my old elementary school helping two 6th grade teachers in their classrooms. They had hired me to help with the typical beginning of the year items that needed to be to be taken care of. I was sitting at the reading table in one of the classrooms sorting notebooks when there was a knock on the door. The librarian called the teacher in the hallway and they whispered for a few minutes. When the teacher came in she told me what was happening.  

The librarian had been going in to the classrooms seeing who would like a TV cart brought into their classrooms to witness what was happening. Being that the students I was with were 6th graders, the teacher said she wanted a TV immediately. While I thought they might be a little young, she looked at it a different way. This teacher explained to me that when she herself was in 6th grade her teacher wheeled a cart into her classroom for the class to view another sad moment in history – the coverage of the assassination of JFK. She remembered seeing this and being affected by it, and wanted her children to have this connection to what would certainly become a big moment in our history. 

When it was brought in, we all watched in amazement. I remember seeing the plane hit the 2nd tower – although looking back now I don’t know if it was in real-time or if it was one of those frames they kept showing over and over. After watching awhile the teacher and I had a great discussion with the kids. They said some things I never would have expected from kids their age.

I went home that day still thinking of the events. My brother had just moved home from living in NYC. His work site had been near ground zero. I was thankful he was home, and we knew exactly where he was – safe.

Today, I remember all this. As I read the paper this morning, I felt sick. At my football game today, while my cheerleaders and I stood at the 50 yard line listening to the national anthem followed by Taps and a moment of silence, I had the chills. While I wasn’t personally affected by that day, I still feel that I (and every other American) was affected in some way. My family members and friends went to fight in wars after this, and have seen many, many horrible things. I thank them for their courage, and everyone else who has had to deal with the aftermath of this tragedy.
But, this day shouldn’t be all about sadness. Look around and see all the red, white, and blue. See all the pride that is evident in our citizens. If anything came out of this, it is the pride Americans have in their country. Families have come together, the country came together.
Please take the time to remember those who were lost during the attacks and in the wars fought because of the attacks.

+ Laura +

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