A Day of Remembrance . . .

My Uncle Harry and Welles Crowther with the Twin Towers in the background.  This photo was taken a couple of months before 9/11 when Welles went to visit my uncle on the fire boat, Marine 1, where my uncle was stationed before retiring after more than 40 years of service to the FDNY.

I live in a community 20 miles north of Manhattan.  On September 11th, 2001 I walked my sons to school.  On the way home I took my time, partly because I was 7 months pregnant and partly because it was a beautiful early fall day and I remember the sky was a brilliant shade of blue and not a cloud to be seen.

I walked in the front door and flipped on the television for a little background noise while I was getting ready to clean up the kitchen from the night before.  I noticed there was a special report on and they were talking about how a plane had hit one of the Twin Towers.  I sat down on the steps leading to the upstairs and listened to a reporter talk about an eyewitnesses report of what had happened.  A friend called to ask if I had heard what had happened.  We were talking and both watching the same news report.  Suddenly, I saw a plane in the background fly into one of the towers.  I thought it was video that someone had taken and they were showing it on the news.  It didn't register at first that I had just witnessed another plane going into the other tower. 

I have to admit that the enormity of this did not register with me at first.  I guess I was in a bit of shock.  My friend's husband called her from the city where he was a police officer and told her to get her kids out of school and bring them home.  He told her that we were being attacked by terrorists and that there were other planes still in the air.  I calmly walked into both of my sons' classrooms and took them out and walked them home.  They had no idea what was going on and I didn't tell them what had happened until we were all safely home.  I remember explaining things to them honestly but in a way that they wouldn't be too scared.  Some how, the words came out okay. 

As the hours passed, the phone would ring and another name would be added to the list of people that we knew that were either a firefighter, police officer, EMS worker or worked at the World Trade Center.  Most called home to say that they were okay but some never made that call.  One hero of that day was Welles Crowther, aka "the man in the red bandana."  You can read his story here .  I knew him from the time he was a little boy and had seen him just a week earlier at a clambake held by our local fire department.  He was a kind, caring, handsome young man who had so much to look forward to. 

Although it didn't happen until almost 9 years later, my uncle Harry was also a victim of 9/11 by succumbing to cancer in July of 2010.  Lieutenant Harry Wanamaker, FDNY spent countless hours "on top of the pile" of debris first for search and rescue and then for recovery.  My Uncle attended funeral after funeral and knew either directly or indirectly a very large percentage of the firefighters lost that day.  You can read more of his story here .

Two plaques dedicated to two heroes outside of the firehouse where they volunteered.

Lest we forget.

Many blessings for a peaceful Tuesday ~ Wendy

1 comment:

Wendy @ Ravenwood Whimzies said...

Thank you for helping us put a face and name to just a couple of those who gave up their lives for others. God bless