I didn’t know anyone that died on 9/11 but watching the memorial this morning on television was very overwhelming and brought many tears to my eyes.
I remember as if it was just yesterday sitting in my fifth grade class. One of the teacher assistants’, Mrs. Mcdonald, was crying uncontrollably. She had been like a mother to all of her students and to see her cry while in class brought concern to everyone. I remember all the students whispering wondering what was going on as she told our teacher, Mrs. Wilkerson, who was not a very emotional lady, but you could see the tears in her eyes. Ironically, Mrs. Wilkerson was our history teacher and to think that what was happening right then was to soon be in our history books. I was so young and naive, it was hard to imagine what was going on. I remember Mrs. Wilkerson telling us that the World Trade Centers in New York City had been hit by an airplane and that this was an act of terrorism. Terrorism was something that was covered so briefly in class and nothing I had ever experienced to understand. Before 9/11 I had read about war in our textbook, but it was something I felt was so long before my time and something that I did not have to worry about because it would not happen again. I remember at lunch kids talking about it and then going home and my mother hugging me as she tried to explain what was going on. To be quite honest the worry that everyone was feeling almost made me feel as if we were all going to die. The days following 9/11 were very memorable.
All the students had gone home and saw what had happened and it became a topic of discussion in class. Many students had questions and I remember everyone being so worried that it was going to happen again.
I feel so much empathy for the lives lost and to hear the stories really makes you want to hug your loved ones. I want to thank all the police officers, firefighters and for everyone who helped on 9/11. They showed us and made us realize what heroism and bravery really is for ourselves, eachother, and our country. When watching television this morning I heard something that will forever stick with me, “these were not lives lost, they were lives given.”