Like all of us who remember this day 14 years ago, I gave a story about it. I remember where I was, what I thought, the shock I never imagined. I remember my classmates and I in shock, not knowing what to do… and our teachers not really knowning either. It’s amazing to me how much things have changed since then in schools. Nowadays schools have disaster plans, trianing for teachers in these situations, all kinds of things. But then? None of us had any idea.
I remember it all, not only because I lived it, but I was on both the yearbook and newspaper staffs. I had to cover it.
It was one of those days that you remember as a writer, one that shows you exactly why you write, why you tell stories and learn from other people. I don’t know that I’ll ever forget interviewing other students that day, other students that didn’t have any idea what to say any more than I had any idea what to ask them.
Memorials sprung up in my school quickly. Most students didn’t have cell phones at that point, so many were trying to get in touch with their parents – many of whom worked in the Pentagon.
It’s one of those things that stays with you forever. It’s something I imagine other generations feel about things like Pearl Harbor and JFK’S assassination. It’s something I feel about 4.16.07 at Virginia Tech. You never forget that moment in time – it’s like it’s frozen there, forever and unchanging.
So today, like every year, I’ll spend some time today thinking of everyone we lost that day and in the days that followed. I’ll think of the family and friends they left behind – those that had to move forward while desperately wanting to turn back time.
Have a great Friday folks. Let’s use today to spread love, not remember hatred.