Showing posts with label 9/11. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 9/11. Show all posts

9/11: Nine Years Past But Not Forgotten

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Ground Zero, New York, August 2010
What makes a nation's pillars high
And it's foundations strong?
What makes it mighty to defy
The foes that round it throng?

It is not gold. Its kingdoms grand
Go down in battle shock;
Its shafts are laid on sinking sand,
Not on abiding rock.

Is it the sword? Ask the red dust
Of empires passed away;
The blood has turned their stones to rust,
Their glory to decay.

And is it pride? Ah, that bright crown
Has seemed to nations sweet;
But God has struck its luster down
In ashes at his feet.

Not gold but only men can make
A people great and strong;
Men who for truth and honor's sake
Stand fast and suffer long.

Brave men who work while others sleep,
Who dare while others fly...
They build a nation's pillars deep
And lift them to the sky.

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Honoring A Fallen Soldier

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Between my husband's role in the military and us living in one of the largest military towns in the US, it's impossible not to be influenced and effected by the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Our local news is full of stories about local troops coming home and being shipped off. When I go on base, I see handmade signs welcoming someone home or announcing a birth. The situation with our troops is something I feel all the time. But this past week the war hit even closer to home. My friend, Christine of Everyday Mama, lost someone in her family. A husband, father, brother-in-law and uncle.

Christine is channeling her grief into something productive. She's working with WitKids, a local organization, to host a Day of Service and Remembrance event this coming Friday, 9/11. WitKids will be collecting items to create Care Packages for our soldiers serving overseas.
In celebration of 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, WitKids will be hosting a family-friendly volunteer event on Saturday, September 11, 2010 in [San Diego's] Little Italy's Amici Park from 9:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. to collect items for military care packages. The event will be held in honor of Staff Sgt. Casey J. Grochowiak; a local Special Forces Army Ranger who was recently killed in-the-line of duty in Afghanistan.

At the event, Witkids will have on hand art supplies for kids and their parents to make “Thank You” cards for military men and women serving overseas to include in the packages. WitKids will also be hosting a donation bin where people are encouraged to bring items to donate to the military care packages. The most requested items include sunflower seeds, beef jerky, instant or ground coffee, travel-size baby wipes, liquid hand sanitizer, pre-paid phone cards and small flashlights.
Please help Christine and her family honor Staff Sgt. Casey Grochowiak. Take a moment to look over the rest of the soldiers' wish list. When I sent packages to my adopted soldier, powdered drink mixes (like Gatorade, Crystal Light and Propel) and summer sausage were huge hits. If you're not able to donate here in San Diego, there are plenty of organizations putting together care packages for our troops.

Please think of our men and women serving overseas today and every day. My thoughts and prayers are with Christine and her family.

Remembering 9/11

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Just for being Americans... By Dave Barry of the Miami Herald

Published Thursday, September 13, 2001

No humor column today. I don't want to write it, and you don't want to read it.

No words of wisdom, either. I wish I were wise enough to say something that would help make sense of this horror, something that would help ease the unimaginable pain of the victims' loved ones, but I'm not that wise. I'm barely capable of thinking. Like many others, I've spent the hours since Tuesday morning staring at the television screen, sometimes crying, sometimes furious, but mostly just stunned.

What I can't get out of my mind is the fact that they used our own planes. I grew up in the Cold War, when we always pictured the threat as coming in the form of missiles - sleek, efficient death machines, unmanned, hurtling over the North Pole from far away.

But what came, instead, were our own commercial airliners, big friendly flying buses coming from Newark and Boston with innocent people on board. Red, white and blue planes, with "United" and "American" written on the side. The planes you've flown in and I've flown in. That's what they used to attack us.

They were able to do it in part because our airport security is pathetic. But mainly they were able to do it because we are an open and trusting society that simply is not set up to cope with evil men, right here among us, who want to kill as many Americans as they can.

That's what's so hard to comprehend. They want us to die just for being Americans. They don't care which Americans die: military civilian Americans, young Americans, old Americans. Baby Americans. They don't care. To them, we're all mortal enemies.

The truth is that most Americans, until Tuesday, were only dimly aware of their existence, and posed no threat to them. But that doesn't matter to them; all that matters is that we're Americans. And so they used our own planes to kill us. And then their supporters celebrated in the streets.

I'm not naive about my country. My country is definitely not always right; my country has at times been terribly wrong. But I know this about Americans: We don't set out to kill innocent people. We don't cheer when innocent people die.

A DECENT PEOPLE The people who did this to us are monsters; the people who cheered them have hate-sickened minds. One reason they can cheer is that they know we would never do to them what their heroes did to us, even though we could, a thousand times worse. They know that when we hunt down the monsters, we will try hard not to harm the innocent. Those are the handcuffs we willingly wear, because for all our flaws, we are a decent people.

And now we are a traumatized people. The TV commentators keep saying that the attacks have awakened a "sleeping giant." And I guess we do look like a giant, to the rest of the world. But when I look around, I don't see a giant: I see millions of individuals - the resilient and caring citizens of New York and Washington; the incredibly brave firefighters, police officers and rescue workers risking their lives in the dust and flames; the politicians standing on the steps of the Capitol and singing an off-key rendition of God Bless America that, corny as it was, had me weeping; the reporters and photographers who have not slept, and will not sleep, as long as there is news to report; the people in my community, and communities across America, lining up to give blood, wishing they could do more.

A GOOD COUNTRY No, I don't see a giant. What I see is Americans. We may have the power of a giant, but we also have the heart of a good and generous people, and we will get through this. We will grieve for our dead, and tend to our wounded, and repair the damage, and tighten our security, and put our planes back in the air.

Eventually most of us, the ones lucky enough not to have lost somebody, will resume our lives. Some day, our country will track down the rest of the monsters behind this, and make them pay, and I suppose that will make most of us feel a little better. But revenge and hatred won't be why we'll go on. We'll go on because we know this is a good country, a country worth keeping.

(Pentagon Memorial)

Those who would destroy it only make us see more clearly how precious it is.

(all photos pulled from Google Images, clink on photo for source)

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