Words that rang out from an Alan Jackson song for months after the tragic event at Ground Zero. Even today, ten years later, I can sing along like it was still a number one hit.
Not only is it the title to the song, it is the question asked by everyone- Where were you? Do you remember?- I know exactly where I was, who told me and what happened the rest of the day. I was at work, at the daycare center, a parent was dropping their child off and told us about it. We turned the news on in one room, and put all of the kiddos in another room in front of another tv, with Barney or a movie or probably both, repeatedly. The adults alternated checking on the kiddos - so we could all pretty much be glued to the TV. Oh, and we took turns fielding phone calls... all the parents to all those children - they were calling to check on us, check on the kiddos and some even wanted to talk to their children. Even though the kiddos had no idea what was going on.
My kiddos were 18 months at the time, so all they know of the event is what they have seen on news and in books. We tried to shield them from it until they were a bit older, but on the 5th anniversary of the event, we did explain things. There was just no way around it.. it was everywhere. Plus, with Roger being so involved in the fire department - it's just our way of life. Tragic events happen, my kiddos know that, they live that, and we are all ok with the lifestyle that comes with being part of the fire fighter/first responder family.
Which, leads me into my next thought on the tenth anniversary of 9/11. The firefighters, policemen and other first responders that showed up that day... Much like this current event, they were not invited that day either. They did what they were supposed to do that day - they just showed up. There have been rumors flying about them not being invited to the Memorial Ceremony, and instead of taking facebook for gospel like so many do, I searched a bit on my on. Sure enough, here is the headline I found:
Found it on NewYork/CBSLocal website. The article goes on to list security & space as reason that they are not invited. My first thoughts... wrong! They should just *show up* invitation or not. Not only are they a big part of the reason that some of the survivors made it out of that alive, but they also lost family in the destruction They lost part of their brotherhood - 15 men from one single shift at one single station! And the rest on that shift can't attend the memorial ceremony??
After some thought and discussion (mostly ranting) about the lack of invitation, I had another thought...
Maybe, just maybe, they weren't invited because if something was to happen (I mean, the levels were all elevated for that day) and the first responders were all in the middle of it, then what would happen? Who would come to the rescue? I know there are still good people out there who would help, but most turn the other way and run... the firemen, policemen and other first responders needed to be out of the area for that day, so they were available in case of emergency.
(this post was started before the anniversary, but I didn't finish up until afterwards)