Tuesday, September 11, 2012


I remember that morning like it was yesterday. 

We had just bought this house a few weeks earlier and after unpacking a few boxes, we had gotten in the car to start our day.  Glen was already  off to work, I had dropped Spencer off at first grade, and I was taking Cami to her first day of preschool.   I remember admiring the clear blue sky shortly before flipping on the radio. 

Instead of the easy-listening music that I expected to hear, though,  the first sounds I heard from the radio that morning were a voice screaming, "OH MY GOD!  OH MY GOD!  Another plane has just hit the second tower!"  

Although I had absolutely no idea what was going on or what tower they were speaking of , I remember my heart leaping into my throat at the alarming tone of the radio announcer's voice.  I listened in horror as the announcer recapped what was happening in New York, then somewhat relieved that it wasn't any closer to home decided to go forward with my day as I had planned it.  I remember a whispered and worried conversation with Cami's teacher as I dropped her off that day. 

Emma, 10-months old at the time,  was still with me in the car as I drove onward to my next destination--a bible study class held at our church each Tuesday morning.  It was the first class of the year and I wasn't sure how Emma was going to do.  She was a little too young for the nursery, but old enough to be mobile.  I sat in the back and hoped that she wouldn't be too disruptive. 

It was only a few minutes into the class when abnormal amounts of people started exiting the room to take phone calls.  I did not really fathom why until someone interrupted the class to announce that a plane had just hit the Pentagon. 

Up until that point, I had been sad and worried for the people in NYC, but I wasn't panicked.  Although Glen did not work at the Pentagon, he did work not too far from the White House and this new turn of events seemed entirely too close to home for me.  I immediately scooped up Emma and drove home to try to get in touch with Glen. 

Not surprisingly, the lines were jammed and not owning cell phones meant that we couldn't even text each other.  I stayed glued to the tv,  praying constantly, and waited to hear from Glen.  I remember worrying that if there had been three planes, why not thirty?    Would they bomb the Metro next?  I wondered if this was what war felt like. 

Eventually Glen called me from his co-worker's cell phone and informed me that he and his co-worker were walking out of the city to his house in Arlington.   There was no way he was going to take the Metro home and traffic was too bad to drive out.     As they walked over the Key Bridge, they could look over and see the smoke rising from the Pentagon. 

At his co-worker's house, he borrowed a bike and rode the rest of the way home--in all about 15 miles.   We spent the remainder of the day huddling together in shock, glued to the tv, and wondering what on earth was going to happen next. 

In the following days as our brains processed what had happened, I  remember watching with pride as American flags sprang up everywhere-- on people's houses, on overpasses, and lining the main streets of our town.  I was so proud that amidst the horrors that that day had brought, that we as a nation could stand together in solidarity and faith. 

Faith that good would prevail over evil.

Faith that God would bring comfort amidst the heartache.  

And faith that we will never forget the great strength that comes when we, as Americans, stand united for a cause.  

God bless America!  

1 comment:

Steve-Rosanna said...

Although there have been many 9/11 tributes and memories shared, your story struck an especially emotional chord. As you remember, we spent a good part of the day on the phone with checking in on Glen's long trek home from the city.

Of course that day will live forever in our collective consciousness.

Amazing how much has has changed in the past eleven years. Thanks for sharing your vivid memories.

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