Written By :Hannah Carpenter
Today is a day of remembrance and heartbreak for America. On this day 15 years ago, America was attacked in a show of terrorists aggression when two planes crashed into the World Trade Center. As news reporters attempted to explain the situation it is hard to not recognize that disbelief in their voices. Americans watched in horror as the dark grey and black smoke funneled from the Trade center . The events of 9/11 left a death toll of 2,996 people and injured about 6,000 men women and children.Including the first hand responders who lost their lives attempting to save the desperate people trapped inside.
I took time over the last few days to ask both students and faculty what they remembered about the travesty 15 years ago. Concetta Swan, a junior English Literature major at Bryan said, “I was five years old, but I clearly remember walking down the hallway after I woke up and seeing Mom standing in front of the TV crying. That picture is burned in my memory. My parents sat my sister and me down that night and explained to us what had happened, This summer I had the opportunity to visit the memorial and museum in NYC. It was very sobering. Even though it made me cry, it was my favorite part of the trip because it was history that I lived through.”
Andy Dowling also a junior Psychology major at Bryan although at the time not currently living in America also recounted his memories of seeing 9/11 occur. “I was in Paris, France. My family had been on the mission field in Romania for a year or so, so we decided to take a vacation to Disneyland in Paris. My dad turned on the TV only to see a news report of the first crash. Only seconds later the second plane hit. My parents were in shock, but I didn’t know why. The next day all of Paris shut down for a minute of silence at noon for the tragedy. A lot of people came up to my parents and offered their condolences/prayers.
Paulakay Hall the alumni director of Bryan was actually on Bryan campus at the time of the attack, “I was teaching a Bible study in Mac’s Cafe here at Bryan when news came of the first plane strike, but we all thought it was a small plane and a minor accident. They turned on the big TV in the Lions Den and there was probably 300 students packed in there (we didn’t have cell phones back then) watching and wondering- and then on live TV the second plane hit. That was a horrible feeling knowing then that it was an intentional attack. We were all crying and praying as we watched the horrible events unfold.”
Whether you were five years old or 55 years old completely processing such a travesty is difficult in and of itself. America had suffered its share of suffering over that previous fifty year but nothing to compare to the death toll of 9/11.
As America prepares to bring a new president to the White House in a little over two months the people of the United States grieve once again for the lives lost. Fifteen years meaning that the clock has turned enough to the point that there are freshmen possibly even sophomores in colleges across America who have no memories of the events of 9/11. Stressing now more than ever the importance of educating the youth of this nation that they may too remember what the events of 9/11 meant to this country then and what they mean now.Because only can this country stand.