I was sitting on the edge of the bed, a little after 6 a.m. in our house in Washington state. Glancing at the TV, I'm absentmindedly aware that things are not as they should be. A plane hits a tower and the whole world changes.
We worked on a Federal shipyard with nuclear-powered ships back on that Tuesday, 15 years ago today. We drove to work through security gates that were probably a little lackadaisical the day before, but not this day. The sky was falling, or so it appeared, and no one could tell us where it would fall next but being on a nuclear shipyard kinda felt like "here" was next. Everyone showed up anyway.
Life as we knew it had changed forever that day. I knew it in my heart as I entered the building where I worked, unlocked classrooms, and went about the business of starting the day.
I knew it as I sat through a morning briefing and my mind could not fathom how we all sat so quietly and calmly while our hearts were breaking in pieces. I knew it as I met with my boss and told him I had to go home even though it was only 10 a.m. on a Tuesday morning. I showed up, but I couldn't stay...and, thankfully, he understood.
More than anything that happened that day, the 40 heroic passengers and crew on United Flight 93 showed me how to live my life or die trying.
When I went home that sad Tuesday in September, I went to bed. I stayed there for 2 days and, spiritually, I might have never gotten up again had I not seen the story of the heroes of United Flight 93.
Those 40 people gave me the courage to get up and try to live a better, less hectic, life. Within 6 months, Bill and I had moved across the country to new jobs, a new home, a new life. Our new life brought us a freedom that had been lacking in our last one.
As I'm sure it did for you, life as we knew it had changed forever that day.
All pictures sourced from Google