Remembering 9/11Posted: September 11, 2011
“I am an American, fighting in the forces which guard our country and our way of life. I am prepared to give up my life in their defense.” ~ US Code of Military Conduct
That statement is what I began to live by starting Aug 20 2002, the day I enlisted in the USAF. A year prior I was only in my senior year in HS and had yet to figure which route I wanted to go until Sept 11 2001. I was in my psychology class at Lee High school, it was almost the end of 1st period. Then the announcement came. A commerical aircraft had hit one of the towers of the World Trade Center. Everyone in my class, ecspecially my teacher, thought it was some freak accident. We were proven wrong once there was a second strike to the other tower , then moments later Pentagon and PA. Something wasn’t right, we all knew at that instant and for that second ; those moments everyone was family, everyone was consoling each other.
I was only 17 at the time but the remorse was overwhelming, the confusion was overwhelming. Seeing the smoke, rumble and destruction that you can only imagine in the movies was happening in real time. The United States of America was in shock. Prior, in 2000 I went to the recuirment office in my home town. I played with the idea of joining the military. In a way it made sense for me to join. My grandfather served as well as my uncles, mother and father. I grew up to a very patriotic family and each one of us served honorably. Once everything happened that morning of Sept 11 2001 I knew what I had to do. It wasn’t even a question for me anymore, I must serve for my country. While I was in basic training my TI made sure that we all remembered why we were there. Remembering why everyday we do what we do. On the year aniversary of 2002 we all watched a documentary of the event a year prior. There wasn’t a dry eye in the room. . . Memories came back of where we were , what we saw and most importantly the lives that were lost.
The events of that day still stay with me much like it stays with all Americans that day. I remember being assigned to my first duty station as a Security Forces (MP) and within months of being there was deployed. I deployed a total 3 times all for the cause to stop the war that began on our soil on 9/11. I couldn’t begin to tell you all that I saw in Iraq or the other stations I as deployed, but I remember the childrens faces I saw who, at no choice of theirs, were involved and affected as well along with the faces presented on the news of the lives lost on Sept 11 and their familes that were affected . Over 3k lives were lost to 9/11 but so many more overseas fighting years later till now. It got more personal to our unit when we lost people and each time there after when we had ramp ceremonys sending bodies back home. It still continues today 10 years later( the war). Soliders, Airmen, Seaman, Marines. . . All the troops stepped to the plate and served. Without reservation or question these men and women were the epitome of the US Code of Military Conduct by giving their life.
On this day and everyday I want everyone to be grateful and continue to be strong. We as Americans have proven that we don’t stay down long, we get back up and fight. I personally know that if I had to do it all over again I would fight for my country like I did. We have came a long way from that day since taking out a most prelevant leader Osama, threats still linger ,but we are vigilant as ever and no rock goes unturned. I will never forget, America will never forget. America is one big family now. Don’t mess with the U.S