Day 51 – Memorializing the 9/11 Tragedy

WIKI: The September 11 attacks, often referred to as 9/11, were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamist terrorist group Al-Qaeda against the United States on the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. The attacks resulted in 2,977 fatalities, over 25,000 injuries, and substantial long-term health consequences. It is the single deadliest terrorist attack in human history and the single deadliest incident for firefighters and law enforcement officers in history, with 343 and 72 killed, respectively.

All of us who were over a certain age, remember the day, time and place we witnessed the 9/11 tragedy. I was attending a weekly men’s bible study group that met every Tuesday morning. We silently watched as television coverage showed smoke emerging from the north world trade tower. As commentators were discussing the possible causes, a second plane drove into the south tower. It only then became clear, this was no accident. It was an attack.

To everyone’s horror, within the hour, the south tower collapsed. Soon after, the north tower followed suit. News began trickling in about the Pentagon attack and failed White House attack by the highjacked plane that crashed in Pennsylvania. Life would never be the same. The entirety of global society, politics, economy, and nature of war were suddenly and irrevocably altered. Making sense, finding meaning and moving forward in the wake of such devastation is not a simple matter.

Perhaps the observations offered by those who led us through those difficult days can provide some hope and insight, not only as it relates to 9/11 but for the challenges we face as a nation today:

  • Even the smallest act of service, the simplest act of kindness, is a way to honor those we lost, a way to reclaim that spirit of unity that followed 9/11. Barack Obama.
  • The attacks of September 11th were intended to break our spirit. Instead we have emerged stronger and more unified. We feel renewed devotion to the principles of political, economic and religious freedom, the rule of law and respect for human life. Rudolph Giuliani
  • It was the worst day we have ever seen, but it brought out the best in all of us. John Kerry
  • Although we can never unsee what happened here, we can also see that children who lost their parents have grown into young adults, grandchildren have been born and good works and public service have taken root to honor those we loved and lost. Michael Bloomberg
  • We didn’t crumble after 9/11. But we’re America. Americans will never, ever stand down. We endure. We overcome. Joe Biden

Read about the Timeline of the September 11 Attacks. Donate to the the 9/11 Memorial and Museum