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Never Forget…

I received a complimentary copy of THE DAY THE WORLD CAME TO TOWN by Jim DeFede from William Morrow.

Waking up this morning, I was struck by how completely I remember waking up 20 years ago today. While I’d still been sleeping, our country had been under attack. My radio alarm went off at the moment that the morning show hosts were talking about the attack on the Pentagon. I am not a morning person, but I have never become fully awake so quickly because I knew my government employee father was ‘back east’ for work and I didn’t know where.

I was so, so lucky where so many weren’t. I was able to immediately reach my mother and confirm he was in lock down on a military base, unreachable but safe. Still that moment is seared into my memory. The rest of the day is in snippets in my mind. I went to work because I didn’t know what else to do, but we were soon evacuated since our building is right next to a major airport. It took time to hear back from other loved ones in New York to know they were safe. It took days of trying to find a way to get my dad back home with flights grounded (I can’t count how many flights I booked him on that were then cancelled) and him ultimately finding a rental to drive all the way home.

So, no real formal post today, but I did decide to pick up THE DAY THE WORLD CAME TO TOWN by Jim DeFede this morning. I haven’t seen the musical Come from Away or heard much of the story of this town in Newfoundland, but I’m already intrigued to hear more. The horror of 9/11 did bring out some amazing stories of heroism from first responders who dedicate their lives to helping, to passengers on a plane determined not to let the terrorists win, to ordinary everyday people who went out of their way to provide some measure of help and encouragement like these people in Gander who showed great compassion to those stranded there by the closure of U.S. airspace.

Never Forget.

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