Heroes Of 9/11

Tuesday, September 12, 2017
There are many heroes of 9/11 and many heroic acts performed that day and the days after that tragic day in human history.

The first responders and medical professionals certainly come to mind especially as we recall the news reports and photos showing them going about their work without regard to their own safety but only with concern for others.
And we should always be grateful to them and those who serve, yes serve, in those valuable professions today.

But I focused this year on remembering the courageous passengers on Flight 93. Vice President Mike Pence, speaking at the memorial service for the passengers of Flight 93 shared his belief that he and other members of Congress were able to go home to their families alive and well because of the brave passengers who stopped the terrorists from carrying out their sinister plan.

These were ordinary people doing extraordinary things when circumstances called for it. They may not all have fully understood everything that was happening that day, but they knew they had the power to stop these fanatics from perhaps killing hundreds or thousands of their fellow Americans.

This kind of American exceptionalism led their ancestors to leave their homeland to come to America. It accounted for Lexington and Concord, King's Mountain, Chalmette, Iwo Jima and D-Day and so many more days of victory over tyranny. Ordinary people doing extraordinary things often without regard for themselves.

And I also recalled the accounts of the child care professionals in Manhattan. They had not only to deal with the crashes and personal fear of more attacks, but the fact that many of the parents of the children in their care did not come to get the children that day or ever again. Words seem insufficient to express how one deals with the emotions cause by tragedies like that.

Those workers and the surviving spouses and families of the victims of terrorism are heroes as well. I have no doubt they continue to struggle with the events of that day in ways I can't fathom.

So as people who never knew the men who's statues they now want to destroy squabble and dispute, let's remember the people who lived in our lifetime-ordinary people who did extraordinary things. And let's memorialize their sacrifice and the exceptionalism that makes us who we are-Americans.

Ralph Miller

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