By Alden L. Benton

 This morning I listened to the names of the Americans who died in the attack on the World Trade Center in New York and I remembered.

 I remembered watching one tower burning and watching in disbelief as a second plane slammed into the second tower.

 I remember the shock, the disbelief, fear, and anger.

 I gathered my emotions and mustered my courage to go to work.  I was a security officer at a local college.

 I remember the eerie silence as I patrolled an empty campus, a silence only heightened by the grounding of all flights.  I remember the fear as a co-worker found an abandoned book bag in the parking lot.  We did not try to retrieve it.

 What I saw in the days that followed I had never seen before, nor have I seen since: America was united.  America was united as one people, one nation, and yes, united under God.  There was no race, no ethnicity, or gender.  We were all Americans, Americans who shared a common bond, and a common loss.

 As we remember those who perished on that day, we must also remember that the enemy who perpetrated that heinous crime still exists and still seeks to do us harm.

 We must find a way to unite as we did in the aftermath of 9-11 and prevent a similar atrocity from ever happening again.  In this we cannot, must not, fail.  To fail would be the ultimate insult to the memory, to the lives, of those who perished that September day 10 years ago.

 We must be ever vigilant.

 On this solemn day, we must also remember those who stand to protect us from harm: the police, the fire fighters, and the young men and women of the armed forces.  They were there for us that day, and many died, and many have died since doing battle with our enemy in distant lands.

 We must never forget.

 We must never forget.

©2011 A. L. Benton/Independence Creek Enterprises


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