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9/11: Never Forget

Today is a day I will always remember. On 9/11/2001 I called my wife, Maggie, to tell her to turn around and come home. She was driving to Akron/Canton Airport to catch a plane for a business trip. I told her that NYC had been attacked and all flights were cancelled. She said, “Tim, you must have heard it wrong. Why would a plane crash in Manhattan cause flights to be cancelled in Ohio?” Well, she called the airline from her cell phone and found out her flight was cancelled. Once she arrived back home we watched the events of the day unfold on TV news reports.

What would happen next? Would we be safe? Are we at war? Who did this? Questions came fast with no answers. As the dust cleared over the next few days both metaphorically and in reality we came to realize the scope of the attack and the identity of the Muslim terrorists. Something then happened in America that we hadn’t experienced since WWII. We came together in spirit and reality. Democrats and Republicans united. Black and White united. Rich and poor united…etc. We were committed to bringing to justice those who were guilty of the attacks. A love for our country characterized by a can-do attitude re-emerged and swept our nation.

It took a national crises to bring us together all those years ago. As I reflect on that day 22 years later I believe that we Americans should not remember that day just for the attacks on our country. While we should honor those who lost their lives and the heroes who stepped up on that day, let’s not forget what else happened. We united in our identity as Americans and resolved to defend this grand political experiment we call the United States of America.

Never forget our strength, our devotion, and commitment to each other. We are Americans.

No force on earth can stop us when we come together as a people blessed by God.

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