Friday, September 24, 2010

A Late Tribute to 9/11. (Forever Relevant)

WTC still remains in spirit. 
Damn.. It feels like just yesterday when this all happened. My third day in the 6th grade at Yonkers High School. A bright-eyed 11 year old with a heart of gold (okay, i'll stop!).. i digress. It was a perfectly warm, early September day. A high of about 70 degrees without a cloud in the sky. Whether you were 11 or 81, you had no idea of knowing that this day would tear a great big hole in the New York Skyline, the already tense relationship between people of middle eastern decent and Americans, and our sense of security. 

4th period. Lunch. Eating my signature Turkey Sandwich, with Lettuce.. sometimes Tomato... and definitely sprinkles of black pepper. With a Kool Aid Jammer.. probably the cherry variety. (i kick it old school, if you didn't know). An announcement from the loud speaker quieted the noisy cafeteria, to a low hum. Our principal, almost resembling FDR, delivered the shocking news of the terror attacks. Imagine how difficult it must have been to pass on that information to middle school children. Kids who go home and watch Hey Arnold and Rocket Power, suddenly have to understand what terrorism is. For some it was an incredibly traumatizing experience. It was a confusing day. Everyone was on edge. 

An endless amount of early dismissal calls shortly ensued. Some kids, left behind their innocence; lives changed forever. There were a few that lost family members. Fortunately enough for me, I did not lose anyone to the attacks. 

After a weird, confusing, eye-opening day. It was finally time to go home to watch the never-ending news reports, all depicting the same drama. The collapse of two great architectural achievements. There were even photographs of a man who jumped out of one of the Towers to his instant death. It was so surreal. Watching everything go wrong. I had never witnessed anything like it, in my life. I had the mind-state that no one would be able step on our soil and touch us. We were vulnerable, just like everyone else. Not impenetrable. Not invincible. A very scary reality. 

Not to forget the tragedies that happened in D.C. and in that open field in Pennsylvania. I tell you the story from my point of view. 

It took me sometime to get over the sound of helicopters and airplanes flying overhead. I was lucky. Some had it much worse, therapy, depression, etc. I appreciated life so much more after that. Looking back on it, 9 years later, I have a much greater appreciation for life. 

As a New Yorker, it still hurts, but If there's one thing about New Yorkers.. we always bounce back. We wont forget. I certainly won't. 

R.I.P. To all of our fallen fire fighters, police officers, civilians, and soldiers who fight for us overseas.  


  1. This I think is your best ever... Good job my son...

  2. I know I'm late in this reply but I remember that day in such a similar fashion. Granted we attended the same school. You definitely tapped into some unfortunate nostalgia.