Ten years later. It is hard to believe. There isn’t an elementary school kid that even remembers what 9/11 was. It is hard to believe that there is a whole generation that doesn’t understand the significance of that day.
I remember it clearly. I was carpooling to work. Two other guys and me driving in a truck listening to KBER. In between heavy metal songs the DJ broke in talking about how there are reports that a bi-plane hit the twin towers. As the commute went by the rumors kept coming in and it seemed like no one knew what was going on.
We finally switched the station deciding to get the real news. When the real reports started coming in we were all shocked. Is this possibly happening? By the time we made it to work the building was buzzing like a bee’s nest. Of course it is the only thing anyone could talk or even think about.
Everyone had a radio on comparing notes from different stations. If there was a television it was on the news. Not that there were any stations playing anything else other than news reports. People started to get worried about their own safety. Was this just an isolated attack?
Unfortunately for me it was also the busiest day of the year. Being an accountant it was a month end and I needed to get my numbers in. It was virtually impossible to concentrate. I had to stop listening to the devastating news so I turned off the radio. I worked as fast as my stunned brain would go. When I finally got my number in I could concentrate on more important stuff. Stuff that would affect the whole country and even the world.
When I finally made it home I stared at the TV just like everyone else. I couldn’t believe what I saw. I literally hurt my heart to see the death and destruction. How could anyone do such horrible things? Horrible things to innocent people.
The next few days aren’t as vivid. It was watching the same footage over and over. It was impossible not to have seen it. I remember that one of the first big gatherings after 9/11 was a WWE event. Vince McMahon came out and talked about how these horrible events wouldn’t stop America. It was a great show. Every good guy won and everyone cheered for the good guy.
He was right. It was a different America after 9/11. It was actually a better America. You couldn’t find an American flag if you tried. They had sold out quickly. People were nicer to each other. We had a common enemy and out petty squabbles were no longer important. I can’t remember a more patriotic time.
Now here we are 10 years later. I hope we never forget 9/11. I hope it will always hurt to think about it. I also hope it keeps making us a better and more patriotic country.