Remembering 9/11 Part 5: Bulletin editorial marking Sept. 11 anniversaryReflecting on our losses and considering the ways our lives have changed may be the most appropriate way to mark the 10 years since Sept. 11.
Anniversaries often are associated with events of special significance in our lives – the time that has passed since a birthday, a marriage, personal accomplishment or, maybe, the death of a loved one.
They often are cause for happiness, but not always. However, they usually are cause for reflection.
There no doubt has been and will be considerable reflection by south Washington County residents and people throughout the country in the run-up to Sunday, the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
The pains from that tragedy linger for some. Friends and family were among the 2,975 people killed in the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and aboard the flight that crashed in a Pennsylvania field. Lives and families were altered forever. Life for many, in small ways and resounding ways, changed permanently.
For some residents in south Washington County, and in other communities, the pain and anguish wrought by terrorism may seem muted, both by time and distance. It is not intentional nor insensitive. Instead, it merely may be caused by not having been there as the attacks unfolded.
Yet further reflection reveals that for most of us, there remain strong ties to that horrific attack. We live far from those sites of terrorism, but there are close connections within our community. They may be our neighbors who personally experienced the attacks or area residents who still grieve the loss of loved ones, acquaintances or strangers. We know of area citizens who answered an unparalleled need for emergency assistance as rescue workers at the site of ground zero.
Some of their stories are recounted in this week’s Bulletin: the Cottage Grove woman who recalled being in New York on Sept. 11, the local firefighter who volunteered time to work near ground zero, the police chaplain whose connection to the World Trade Center stretches back decades to when he helped in its construction. On this 10th anniversary, they’ve shared their thoughts and memories with our readers. Their stories may make you think about the attacks in a different way.
We are inexorably tied to the terrorist attacks in myriad ways both subtle and profound. Friends or relatives may have been called to duty in the military. Post-Sept. 11 protocol became the norm for local law enforcement and emergency responders. Security measures have created new restrictions, from access to treasured national monuments to how we travel by air.
Reflecting on our losses and considering the ways our lives have changed may be the most appropriate way to mark the 10 years since Sept. 11.