9/11... Twenty Years Later

The ever-standing question that oftentimes comes up… “Where were you when the world stopped turning?” To quote the famous Allen Jackson. Either way… Today marks the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Let me tell you where I was.

It was a Tuesday, and the family and myself were preparing for a wonderful Allen Jackson concert (remember the quote from above? Yes, that most amazing country singer who’s music I still adore to this day) and never in a million years were we at all prepared for the events of that most fateful day. The sun was shining, even the birds were singing. I got on the van that came to drive me to school (I had been going to school per the vans from the Transportation Colaborative organization that drives special needs students rather than the normal school bus.) Classes proceeded as normal, but I do remember having just returned from a mobility session with… somebody, can’t remember who it was at the moment, when my teacher, Maryjane Clark, arrived next to me on the sidewalk, seemingly from out of nowhere. “Get back to class. I need to talk to you”, she had said. “What’s going on? are we in trouble?” I had asked. Ms. Clark said nothing.

the classroom was silent; no one was talking, and something about the day bothered me… I didn’t know then, however I know now, that the energy in the room was off; none of the normal vibrancy was present at all. it was then that mS. Clark started to speak… she explained what was happening, and she did a fantastic job helping to convey to children the magnitude of the day’s events. (I might have been a smart twelve-year-old, but I was only twelve; a child.) Either way… the show did eventually go on, and I can’t remember now, but I think the Perkins School for the Blind might have had an early release that day, but don’t quote me.

On the way home, the quietude continued with my favorite rap station, JAMN 94.5, not even playing music, and instead, the DJs (Ramiro and Pebbles at the time), simply stated facts about the days events, mourning the three thousand who had died, though at that point, no one new the death toll. I will never forget that experience for the rest of my life… instead of it being normal, we remember who tried to bring this country down; all they have failed to do though, in the next twenty years, though, is bring us to our knees. U.S. Strong, Boston Strong; the two phrases that I will keep in the back of my mind, always. The fictional President Whitmore from Independence Day sums up today well during the scene when he said: “A lot of people died today… so many didn’t have to.” If only our current president were that sensative… (whoops, I didn’t say that out loud, did I??) The US still stands… twenty years later, and no one will mess with us. Despite our difficulties in politics, the pandemic, and everything else, we are still here… take that, Al-Qaeda!