History was made 14 years ago today. The hearts of the American people were left as
empty as the New York City skyline, and grief hung heavily in the air like the smoke rising from the remnants of the World Trade Center.
Each detail remains imprinted in the memories of those who were old enough to understand the magnitude of al-Qaida’s failed attack on the Capitol building and the successful demolition of the Pentagon and the World Trade Center. Americans who were old enough can recall even the most remote facts about their experience.
“I remember getting home that day and looking up,” history teacher Ryan Spoonmore said. “It was a crystal blue day. Not a cloud in the sky. Absolutely nothing in the sky.”
Although the event was devastating and took a heavy toll upon Americans, there were aspects of that day which still remain as a source of pride.
“I was just unbelievably proud of the way the nation handled the situation and how the first responders rushed in without any regard for themselves,” Spoonmore said. “And I was glad we had leaders like President Bush and [New York City Mayor Rudy] Giuliani who handled the event so well for their citizens.”
Citizens and crisis teams throughout the whole country responded with determined unity. People of all backgrounds came together in a monumental effort to help in any way possible. Through one of the toughest times in American history, they endured.
“It was an emotional time, ” Spoonmore said. “But after a while everything sort of went back to normal.”
After mourning the estimated 3,000 victims, the nation was able to move past the tragedy. However, no matter how many years may pass, that day will not be easily forgotten, and the lives that were taken will always be remembered.
Fourteen years ago, the United States of America became truly united, a fact that still evokes pride within the hearts of its citizens. Although at times the nation may seem divided, when the need arises, Americans will come together to provide each other with the help and support necessary to remain strong through struggle and pain. On this day, September 11, America remembers.