Friday, September 16, 2011

9/11 ten years later

I remember the day very well. I was babysitting for our 3 year old grandson. Our six year old granddaughter was at school. And our other five grandchildren had not been born. We were watching Sesame Street and Edgar was at the dentist.
I answered the phone, and my daughter asked if I had been able to contact her sister who lived in New York. "No. I haven't tried. But I don't expect any problems."
I could tell, over the phone, that she paled and then she said, "You don't know do you?" "Know what?" "Aren't you watching TV?" "Yes, Sesame Street." "Oh well, you better change the channel." And that is when I saw the unbelievable, the unimaginable, the unthinkable.
My grandson had turned his head away for a moment, and I was able to switch back to Sesame Street before he saw the devastation.
I called my daughter in New York and, thankfully, got right through to her. One of the New York newspapers called her to go to a nearby hospital and interview whoever she could and report back. The hospital was loaded with workers, gurneys, bandages, and blood. But there were no patients.
For weeks after 9/11, the photos of missing people, smiling faces, beautiful clothes, screamed out to her from fences, telephone poles, even fire hydrants. The "missing" posters eventually lost their ability to make her cry. But, even months later, when she was walking along a street and made eye contact with a total stranger, they would look at each other and both would burst into tears.
That trauma is over. And now she's wondering about the report that the Pentagon/CIA had been making arrangements to have two pilots fly suicide, kamikaze missions into Flight 93 - one into the tail and one into the cockpit. They had not figured out how the pilots could safely eject and accomplish their mission when they received word that the brave passengers on United Flight 93 had taken care of the plane.

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