21 Years Ago


It’s been 21 years. Every year I remember. I remember looking down Wisconsin Avenue in Bethesda, MD and seeing the smoke rise off of the Pentagon. We saw the towers smoke and smolder on TV and eventually fall as my co-worker yelled through tears, “All those people!”. I remember sitting in the car with my friend. Traffic at a standstill in the NOVA-DC-MD region as we tried to get home. Hearing reports of another plane coming down the Potomac. Looking up at the sky wondering what was to come next. Being glued to the television for days and weeks to come.

I also remember every year because my wedding anniversary is September 15, 2001. My love and I were married that year and we are still together 21 years later. I don’t just remember our wedding day. I remember the people who made it happen despite the best efforts of some evil men beings. September 11th not only horrified us and showed America’s vulnerabilities, it also showed the world our resilience.

I saw resilience through family and friends that drove across country to be at our rehearsal dinner, wedding ceremony and celebration. Strong Americans who bonded and vowed not to let those who murdered innocents ruin the sacred union my wife and I made. We won that day. All of us together.


Today, September 11, 2022 I was curious how much 9/11 was on people’s minds. Turns out it is #17 in the Google Trends search. Guess what’s ahead of it and below it? NFL related searches. Do you remember what it was like September 12, 2001? The human bonds the world had, that Americans had? In 21 years we’ve become more and more divisive. Why? Must a tragedy happen for us to bond? Why would the NFL become more important on the anniversary of such a terrible day than people sharing the history of 9/11 with other generations or each other?

I don’t have the answers, but I feel strongly that if more of us that were alive on 9/11/2001 could replicate the bond we had on 9/12/2001 that America and the world would be a better place. We could be bonded by good vs. evil, not sharply divided by who loves what gender, which political party is right or wrong or who has the moral high ground on disease or “the science” or other group think ideas, movements and tomfoolery that often belie reason.

Godspeed to those lost on and since 9/11/2001. I will never forget.

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