We Will Never Forget
It’s been 19 years, and we have not forgotten. We will never forget the veterans, service members, first responders, and family members who gave the ultimate sacrifice and never made it home that day on September 11, 2001. For many of our local warriors, this day was the catalyst for their military experience. Air National Guard Veteran Lindsay is one of those veterans. She said 9/11 is what made her stay in for 20 years.
Lindsay said, “I was 20 when 9/11 happened. I had been serving in the New York Air National Guard at the 107th Air Refueling Wing in Niagara Falls, NY in the Security Forces Squadron since 1999. I was also going to SUNY Buffalo State College for criminal justice, and part of the DIII Softball team as the starting catcher.
I remember watching the news that morning before I headed to campus for classes and fall practice. I said to my Mom, ‘This isn’t normal, planes don’t just fly into buildings like that.’ Before I left, I grabbed a bag with gear and uniforms and headed to campus. When I got there, it was not 20 minutes before I got a page that told me to get to the base. There is where my adult life began.
9/11 to me is something I re-live every year. I think about it often; I pray for the families that were affected then and are still effected now. My squadron was on stand-by to go to Ground Zero. We never went, instead of going somewhere else we were needed at the time. However, I was close enough. I went to the pile and stood there in tears. It was eerie. NYC is not a quiet place, but at Ground Zero, it was incredibly quiet. To this day, at the memorial, it is still quiet compared to the rest of lower Manhattan.
9/11 made me proud to be an American, proud to be a member of the greatest military in the world, proud to be a first responder. I will never forget those who died that day. I will never forget the images of those brave men and women going into the towers to try and save others. Anytime I see a photo or video, it brings me right back to that Tuesday morning in NYC. I know exactly what I was doing that day and what transpired afterwards; it shaped my adult life. As a New Yorker, I will never forget. As a Defender, I will never forget. As a First Responder, I will never forget. Now, as a Mom, I will never let my child forget. As a country, WE should never forget.”