It is impossible to summarize the feelings of Americans as the 10-year anniversary of 9/11 approaches. A 400-word blog would do that no justice, nor should it. At the same time, it’s equally impossible to let the time pass without reflecting on of how that date has changed the world, America, and humanity.
My home page of Yahoo is a daily reminder of the approaching anniversary. The website has taken what I think is a beautiful approach to observing this date in its “9/11 Remembered” series of poignant features. There are personal stories, horrific reminders, and historical markers. There are pictures and videos, upcoming events and memorials. When I read these accounts, it takes me back 10 years in an instant.
I don’t know a single American who cannot tell me where they were and what they were doing that morning when these events unfolded. Time stopped, metaphorically, and our lives were forever changed. Not expounding on the obvious ways that the country and world changed (airport security, the economy, politics), personally people started to appreciate life more and commend public servants for their tireless work. When the unthinkable occurred, it rocked our world, and a new sense of unity and resilience was born.
On Sunday, the U.S. Embassy in Beijing will commemorate the 10th anniversary for the American community, honoring the victims of the attack that took place on American soil in 2001. Ambassador Locke will lead this event, including an evening candlelit vigil at 7:30pm. Events throughout the world will unite Americans to pay respects to those who sacrificed on that day.
Many of our children were not even born when 9/11 occurred. How do you explain to them what happened, why, and what the impact has been? Below is a link about how to answer their questions, as well as the Yahoo link to share stories from survivors. These, as well as our own personal experiences, help us remember – with sadness as well as determination for the future – an event that has forever changed our lives.