9/11 Never Forget
Every generation has one or two moments that become a "where were you when" moment. For my generation, 9/11 was just that. It is crazy for me to think of how much the world has changed since 9/11/2001. TO be completely honest, it is hard to even imagine what the world was like back then. It was a simpler time. Much of the social unrest that is common today existed but it was hidden. Social media was a thing but it was nowhere near the monster that it had become and in many ways the out of sight out of mind way of life that existed in the early 2000s made for a society that was not filled with as much hate as today.
Where was I when the horrors of 9/11 occurred? I was just starting my second year at Temple University. I had an early morning class on that Tuesday. My class started at 7 or 7:30 am. I remember my professor ending class a bit early after that first plane hit the tower. Upon leaving class I ran into an old friend from high school, who's father was a high ranking Philadelphia police officer, and my friend told me that his father recommended that he leave campus (which was located close to Center City Philadelphia) and head back to Far Northeast Philly where he had grown up. That is all I needed to hear. If anything I saw it as a good excuse to commute home and miss a few classes on my busy day, since I had no clue of the severity of the events as of yet.
I picked up my Nextel and called my friend and former teammate, John Price, who had earlier caught a ride to school with me from his parents house. I was a commuter student so John would call me whenever he was looking to get back to campus after spending a night with neighborhood friends or family. I told John that there was some serious stuff going on in New York and I think it is best if we head back home early today. John agreed so we met at my car in North Philly and started the route home. We tuned into Howard Stern's broadcast of the events and it began to really hit us that what was occurring was a historic event. The horrors of the tragedy seemed to poke through the radio like broken glass piercing skin.
To this day I can remember John and I looking at the Philadelphia city skyline, while we waited in a traffic jam on I-95, and asking each other, "could this really happen here too". Luckily it did not but still that was the first tie in my life that i ever felt like american citizens were not protected. All of the stories that you hear about tragedy happening in other countries could also happen here. It was a real culture shock for me.
Sports played an integral role in bringing, not only me, but the entire country back to normalcy after 9/11. Whether it was the kickoff of the NFL week 2 a week late or Mike Piazza hitting a homerun for the Mets (as if it was a sign that New Yorkers were always going to fight back) sports helped. To many of us sports were the exact medicine that we needed then and in my opinion sports can still play a huge role in how America is still healing today.
God bless all who helped America on that day and who have fought to keep us safe ever since.
Tuesday’s Children provides a lifetime of healing for those whose lives have been forever changed by terrorism or traumatic loss. Through a time-tested, long-term approach, Tuesday’s Children programming serves and supports our nation’s military Families of the Fallen; builds resilience and common bonds in communities worldwide recovering from tragedies; and keeps the promise to support all those impacted by 9/11.