Saturday, September 11, 2010


On September 11th, 2001 I was a librarian in an elementary school and ironically, that morning, the faculty was walking the evacuation route should we ever have to get the kids away from the school. When we got back from our drill, we heard about the first plane going into the tower.  Everyone was stunned.  I turned on the TV in the library and we watched the second plane hit.  That's when we knew it was no accident.

Then there was The Pentagon.  And the flight that went down in Pennsylvania.  Buildings collapsed. Thousands of lives were lost. Everything changed.  Living just an hour away from Ground Zero, fighter jets flew patrols over my area for a few days.  Transportation was disrupted and everyone was walking around in a daze.  Driving by train station parking lots was chilling.  There were hundreds of cars, sitting for days, waiting for owners who who would never come to claim them.

I knew people who died.  I know people who were in NYC when it all happened.  I heard stories of people running for their lives, thanking God for making a train late so they weren't at their desks, and of people who walked out of the city over bridges and through tunnels like refugees. People were at their strongest, their kindest, their most resilient that day because they had to be.  There was no choice.

There's a lot of talk about making 9/11 a holiday and I don't know if that's appropriate.  What I do think we should do is remember all who were lost, all who continue to suffer, and then we should go on with our lives.  We shouldn't let the twisted people who masterminded that plan win by making us afraid, making us intolerant or keeping us from enjoying the lives we've built.

So in memory of 9/11 do something positive--make a donation, help a friend, find time to call someone you haven't talked to in a while, learn something new.  Be a force for good.  Because then the people who try to bring us down will never win.


  1. I live on the west coast, and I can't even imagine what it was like to be there on that day. And your description of train parking lots filled with cars is chilling. Yes, I like your idea of using the day to remember, and to be a force for good.