|9/11 Memorial NYC|
As an American, I don't think any of us will ever forget the horrific events of the morning of September 11, 2001 Nearly 3000 people lost their lives in a terrorist attack by the Islamic group al-Qaeda. The victims died in the Twin Towers, the Pentagon and on the four planes used in the attack.
As a New Yorker, I hope you can understand that this tragedy resonates just a little more for us. So many of those lost, colleagues, Policemen, Firefighters, mothers, fathers, sons and daughters were killed in our City, on a crisp crystal clear morning 12 years ago.
Like all moments that forever change the course of history, the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, where you were when you heard the news is irrevocably etched in your memory.
My husband called me from his office downtown when the first plane hit the North tower. At that point, it was assumed it was a small plane that mistakenly flew into it. We sat and watched the events unfold together on the phone. 17 minutes later, when the hijackers flew the second plane into the South tower, it was apparent that this was no accident.
By the time I got to work, we all stood together in stunned silence as we watched in grief and horror as the the Twin Towers fell, killing many of its terrified victims, knowing they were not going to make it out.
Haunting and painful. Still.
It was a surreal and confusing morning. None of us knew if more attacks were planned or where. My employers, the Mitchell family, closed Richards and instructed us to go home and be with our families.
I picked my son up at school and gathered with my friends and their children. We waited for hours for our husbands to return home, though we knew they were safe.
We were lucky. Our neighbor across the street was not.
Our City ached. The markets were frozen but in turmoil. The grief, for those who lost their loved ones, unbearable.
There were stories of great heroism by those sworn to protect us, kindness among strangers, luck for those who missed their trains that morning.
As the years have passed, we have rebuilt, completed a magnificent memorial, and outwardly, healed...
But we will NEVER forget.
My condolences to all who lost family and friends on that terrible morning, so many of them young and not even in their prime. May they live in your hearts, for all your days.
God Bless America.