Brent went to New York on business at the end of January 2002 for a job at the WTC, about 4 1/2 months after the attacks. He took this picture as he stood at Ground Zero.
This was what they did every time they found someone in the rubble. It rips my heart out to look at this picture, but I do. I think about the families of that person they pulled out, 4 1/2 months later, finally knowing for sure that they had lost their loved one. I think about the men finding those people, and the horror they experienced again and again for almost a year after the attacks. I think about how it changed the face of our country forever.
I don't ever want to forget. More than that, I always want to remember.
More than anything, though, in the grief afterwards, I remember how united we all became in an instant, and came together with a love for the strangers that surround us every day. Empathy for the fellow American. Appreciation for what wasn't lost.
I remember how saddened I was that it took such an enormous loss for it to bring us all together. I am amazed it's been five years- I still remember that morning like it was yesterday, and I can only imagine how time has stood still for those who lost someone they loved that day.
My heart goes out to the families and friends of the almost 3,000 people that were lost that day, and for the pain they endure. For those children who lost the fathers they will never know.
I do believe we are just as vunerable today as we were then. If nothing else, it's yet another indicator of how precious life is, to not take for granted the days we have with those we love. We cannot stop what we do not know, but we can hope for a peace for all of us to become a little more tangible for the world, because it seems so far and distant right now.
Picture taken February 2002
Journaling September 2006