Blog posts all over the country will be pretty somber today. As well they should be. I think today is a time for remembrance and resolve.
First, the remembrance.
Nearly 3000 bloggers have gotten together in the 2996 project (this is a mirror site - the original exceeded its bandwidth) to individually honor and remember the victims. If you have a few minutes to check them out, they are well worth reading.
One that I went to right away was for my friend Brady Howell, who was killed in the attack on the Pentagon when terrorists aboard American Flight 77 snuffed out the lives of over 100 people. Brady was 26 years old, and working as a civilian in the Naval intelligence office. He was hilarious, brilliant, and a little kid-like. He was a faithful member of the LDS church, and served a full-time mission in the Canary Islands.
I remember jumping on his trampoline, going toilet-papering (and yeah, getting caught by his dad), hanging out on Sunday afternoons and watching scary movies on Friday nights with our group of friends. He had an infectious laugh and an easy-going attitude. He was the Student Body President at Sugar-Salem High School in 92-93, and I was his campaign manager. Mostly I was just his friend, and will always be. Here’s a link to the Wikipedia entry for him.
Today I will think about him, and his joyful life. I’ll say a prayer for his wife, Liz, and for his family. And I’ll remember. Brady, you will never be forgotten.
Now, the resolve.
I was struck by a blog post I read this morning by Michelle Malkin. She has translated a bit of Arabic script on her site that she calls her “9/11 anniversary message” : It means “I will not surrender/I will not submit.” I’ve watched the news reels and seen the photos and relived the horror and fear of that day. I really thought that the world was ending, and I remember hearing that 50,000 people worked in the Trade Center and so many were unaccounted for. In the end, less than 3,000 never made their escape, but even ONE is too many. Even one life cut short is too many.
Your political bent might not be the same as mine, and that is ok. But today is a day - not necessarily for political resolve, unless that is what keeps you going - but for resolving in my personal life to do things a little better. To recognize that there is fear in the world, and to keep living anyway. To keep the memory alive and go forward to better things, trying harder to be better every day. This is my resolve.
And one last note. As a scrapbooker, I’m struck now that most of what we have to remember the victims of that terrible day of tragedgy - are photos. Most of the photos I’ve seen of the victims aren’t professionally posed headshots, but family pictures - grainy, out of focus, poorly lit. And I know that they are easily among the most precious things those families have, and that we as a nation have, in order to Never Forget. Photos of times that cannot be reclaimed are imbued with an almost tangible power. And indeed, every moment that passes is one that cannot be reclaimed.
So if you happen to scrapbook (or even if you happen to own a camera), let’s go take a few photos of loved ones today. They will become infinitely precious to someone someday—whether blurry, or poorly lit, or perfect. I’d love to see what you shoot if you’d like to link me up.
Thanks for reading this. If you have a remembrance or tribute on your blog, post the link here and I’ll head over and read it. 9/11 will always be, for me, a day of remembering.