Very few of us who were living will ever forget where we were or what we were doing when we first heard about the attacks on 9/11/01. I sure won't.
For unimportant reasons, I had just broken up with my husband (boyfriend at the time) the night before. My roommate and I didn't have cable or even get local channels at our apartment, but we did have memberships to Gold's Gym in Nashville. So the following morning we decided to go workout, clear our head of boys and work up a sweat...only that didn't happen. As we approached the double doors of the gym, we could see several people staring up at the television screens and knew that something really interesting must be going on to keep all these fitness fanatics from their exercise. Little did we know...
As we approached and discovered that one of the towers had been hit, it was still unclear as to whether this was intentional or an accident. At the time, we weren't aware of the other attacks. As we watched in horror, a second plane appeared and struck the second tower. Now it was obvious. This was no accident. This was an intentional, deliberate attack on U.S. soil. Within minutes, the tower began to fall. Then, the first followed. It didn't seem real. We were all in shock. "What is happening?" was the question on everyone's mind.
Melissa, my roommate, was from New York and her dad worked near there so we hurried home so she could call and check on him. It seemed like quite a while before she was able to reach him, though, and we were getting worried. Thankfully, he was out of harm's way and okay.
I'll never forget that day and those that followed. I'll never forget the people and friends I spoke to and the stories they shared about that day. So much heartache, pain, and devastation. So much disbelief and uncertainty. The world as we knew it had changed. Suddenly, we weren't as confident in our safety as we once were.
My heart goes out to everyone who lost a loved one on this day eleven years ago. From the families and friends of the first responders and employees to those who just found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time. You are in my prayers today as you remember those you loved and lost. May it comfort you, however slightly, to know that we have not forgotten. We remember. We will continue to remember. Your loved ones were important. Their lives mattered. We grieve with you today as we remember the fallen. We continue our fight for freedom, having risen from the ashes of this fateful day. We will prevail, America. We will carry on.