The Twin Towers burning, first one, then the other, as that second plane came crashing into it, the plane then exploding in an orange ball of flame and smoke. The people fleeing the scene, looks of sheer shock, panic, and terror clearly evident on their faces, as they tried to get to safety.
The towers then collapsing into nothingness, and seeing people halfway around the world celebrating the attacks, and buring the American flag as they did so.
The sheer helplessness I felt for my brother, Johnathon, as he awaited word on his brother, who lived in New York City (and still does), and not knowing anything for most of that day; and the flood of relief flowing from his eyes as he cried tears of relief and gratitude.
The sight of the Pentagon in Washington DC also on fire, and wondering if there were going to be any more attacks ... and if so, where ....
The seriousness of President Bush as he addressed the nation that night about that attacks and how caring and concerned he truly was for the famlies of the victims. How the world reached out to embrace a hurting, stunned America, as she struggled to come to grips with what happened ... and why.
The sight of people praying, weeping, singing hymns or patriotic songs, as the nation came together in a solid mass of support and love for their fellow man. The sight of people collecting money (and other items) to send to the victims' families and friends and the sight of people signing huge, gigantic cards to send to New York (and also Washington DC).
So many memories, so many images .... they still play over and over in my head, like a broken record, even though I was only a little girl of 8 1/2 (I would be turning nine in just a few short months). Now I am nearly 20, and the pain I still feel in my heart this time of year still remains as sharp, as strong as ever. One of my friends lost her best friends in the attacks and I can't help but wonder what M'Buti must be thinking as we are reminded yet again of the horror of that historical event.
I can remember where I was that day. I was at school. I remember Mrs. Hemingway, my teacher back then, telling us about the Twin Towers in New York City (and also the Pentagon in Washington DC) being on fire and the sheer helplessness I felt in my gut. I remember bursting into tears and wondering if we were at war, and what was going to happen next. I was so scared!
In addition, I remember going home early as the principal closed the school for the remainder of the week as he told us to go home to our families and give them lots of hugs. I remember the silence as planes were grounded for several days after the attacks and how security had been beefed up just about everywhere, especially at public events, airports, bus terminals, train stations, and the like. It was a time of great fear and uncertainty.
Ever since then, I wonder if it could happen again, and if so, what would we do, or whether it would be worse (as if the first time wasn't already bad enough; nearly 3,000 people ... men, women, even children ... died in the attacks). I have been doing a lot of journaling ever since, not to mention, writing poetry or stories; it has helped me heal, but I will never forget. I won't forget. I can't forget. To do so would be a disservice to the victims and their families. So I choose to remember, even though it is still quite painful, even nearly 11 years later.
May we NEVER forget!!!! I know I won't!! I CAN'T!!
God bless America again; may He have mercy upon her!
~Love, your friend, Ronee' Le-Anne Reaux. :(