www.whyville.net Sep 12, 2010 Weekly Issue

Times Writer

A Time to Remember

Users' Rating
Rate this article

There are some things that, when they happen, you just remember where you are. Ask your grandparents what were they doing when they heard JFK had been shot? These days leave a mark on us, searing into our minds the sheer horror of the events.

I was in first grade. I was five. I didn't even understand what was happening and I still remember where I was -- on the reading carpet, being watched by a lunch monitor while my teacher gathered in the break room with almost everyone else on staff to watch the news. All they told us was that something bad was happening in New York and we didn't care because it wasn't in our backyards. How could it affect us?

A week later, my best friend at the time, Murphy, was pulled out of class. She didn't come back for a week. When she did, she told me that her grandma had been in New York when the bad thing happened and now she was dead. It was one of the scariest things I'd ever heard and for months afterward, I would look up to the sky before going into school, checking for stray planes.

My aunt was a high school History teacher at the time. She has a much different story than I do.

"The principal came running down the hall, telling us to turn on the news. We did . . . It was right after the first plane it." She recalled. "The kids were horrified. One of them, a girl named Catherine, looked up at me and asked 'Do you think there were any people in those buildings?' I didn't know how to answer. How could you answer that? I think she honestly thought those building were empty. It was so eerily quiet . . . Not a word, not a sigh, not even a tear. We all started crying later . . . But for then, it was all we could do to make ourselves believe it wasn't some sort of sick joke."

v My mother was at work. Her mother called and her told her to turn on her TV. Later that day, she sat down with me after my brother was in his bed for the night and tried to explain it in a way I could understand.

"Not everybody likes America, honey." She said. "These people didn't and they tried to hurt us. But we're stronger than that."

Ten years later, I can remember exactly how those words sounded. I will always remember.

I will remember because my mom was right. We are stronger than that. Nine years later, we remember and we cry for those that died and their families who would do anything to have them back. We mourn for and with them . . . But we do not let it weaken us.

To quote Leonard Pitts' article in the Miami Herald, written just days after the attack:

"We'll go forward from this moment sobered, chastened, sad. But determined, too. Unimaginably determined. You see, there is steel beneath this velvet. That aspect of our character is seldom understood by people who don't know us well. On this day, the family's bickering is put on hold. As Americans, we will weep; as Americans, we will mourn; and as Americans, we will rise in defense of all that we cherish. Still, I keep wondering what it was you hoped to teach us. It occurs to me that maybe you just wanted us to know the depths of your hatred. If that's the case, consider the message received. And take this message in exchange: You don't know my people. You don't know what we're about. You don't know what you just started. But you're about to learn."

Sims2girl, sharing a moment of silence.
*Never Forget*

Editor's Note: Leonard Pitts' article is for readers age 13 and over. If you'd like to read it, please make sure to talk to your parents beforehand and also afterward to discuss the contents.


Did you like this article?
1 Star = Bleh.5 Stars = Props!
Rate it!
Ymail this article to a friend.
Discuss this article in the Forums.

  Back to front page