Here it has been nine years since the tragic events of 9/11 and it feels like it was just only a few months ago.
About a week or so I blogged about visiting the World Trade Centers for the very first time and how much fun and how in awe I was of those monuments.
I was just waking up when Kristy called me from her teaching job at South Hills to tell me that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Centers. I quickly hopped on the Internet to check out the news and details at that point was still sketchy. But I didn't think it was going to be bad. So I jumped in the shower thinking nothing was wrong.
I turned the news on and saw all the smoke and debris and the first thing I noticed was that one of the World Trade Centers was gone. And then the unbelievable happened, I witnessed the second World Trade Center collapse. Words cannot describe how I felt. I have been in those buildings, I knew people who worked around and in those buildings. I sat on the couch glued to the news but I don't think I was really listening. I was in shock.
Then it sunk in. Not only were the towers destroyed, the Pentagon was attacked and another plane that was likely heading to the White House fell out of the air and crash landed in a field. The feeling of shock never went away but my feelings of sadness quickly turned to anger. I was angry because I was helpless.
I don't remember how the rest of that day shaped up, I was still too numb to think of anything. Then my mom called from work and it hit me. It was like I was in this horrible dream and that it was all happening in just my world which surrounded me. Getting that call from my mom shocked me back to reality. It was really happening. All I remember after talking with my mom is that I prayed and I cried. I am thankful for all the people that reached out to me. And everyone I knew in New York was safe.
But that didn't ease my feelings that much. Eventually my anger faded and I felt an eagerness to help out and to be a better person. I wanted to serve my country and I wanted to help heal my country. Surprisingly I found words of comfort from the world of wrestling. The WWE decided that they needed to go live on TV with their weekly Smackdown show. The wrestlers came out along with the owner and told everyone that we needed to get on with our lives to show those that oppose us that we will not bow down and stop. This message was repeated many time by others and I knew that is how I could help. I could get back to normal. I went to see the U2 concert about a month and half later, I still did things that I normally did because I wanted to show that we cannot be stopped.
Now I don't want this to turn political, that would be a dishonor for those victims and all those that are fighting for our freedom. I am not going to talk about whether the current war is right or wrong. I am just thankful for those that are fighting for us. They are risking their lives for my sake and I owe them a debt I can never repay. I support you in your fight and I wish and pray for your safety and that you can come home alive with your mission complete.
While serving my LDS mission to New York City, I met a lot of people from all walks of life and all sorts of beliefs. And those people were nothing but kind to me. I have spent many hours sharing my thoughts and beliefs with these people and they have done the same to me. I was taught to respect everybody no matter what they look like, no matter what they believe. Those people have a special place in my heart and a day doesn't go by without me thinking of them.
On this day I ask that everyone out there remember and honor those victims and those that have died for us. Do not use this day as an excuse to hate. Don't use this day to advance your political beliefs. That is what led to these terrible attacks. We cannot give into hate. If we do we become everything that we stand against.