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11 a day to remember Ten years ago this week I was visiting Antigonish with my wife and parents.

While our visit was mainly for pleasure, there was a little bit of business involved as my wife met with representatives of the Casket about a position with the company. This meeting, and an event a few days later, changed our lives forever. The attacks, and the attempt courageously stopped aboard Flight 93 which crashed in a Pennsylvania field, killed nearly 3,000 people, including a couple dozen Canadians. What happened on 9/11 has impacted a generation. The initial shock and anger may have subsided but the reaction to the al Qaeda attacks planned by Osama bin Laden are ongoing. The events of that day and the years subsequent will surely be relived this week as the world marks the 10th anniversary of the attacks. For me, the anniversary and a recent trip to Virginia helped recall the vivid memories of what happened on that infamous day. At the time, my wife and I were living in northern Virginia just outside Washington. The day prior to the attacks we traveled from St. to our apartment. I recall crossing the Hudson River in New York in a terrible thunderstorm late at night, looking down river and pointing out the Twin Towers to my mother. They were lit up and majestic. Little did we know what would transpire only hours later. Arriving home in the early hours of 9/11 we all went to bed before my parents arose early and continued their trip home. Later in the morning, I received a call from my brother. When I explained jimmy choo diamante heels we were home and that mom and dad were on the road, he informed me of what was happening in New York and at the Pentagon. Immediately, we, like millions of others, turned on the television and watched the tragedy unfold. We could not reach mom and dad as the cell phone system, overburdened with people trying to contact loved ones, collapsed. Later we discovered that my parents knew little of what was happening but had witnessed dozens of police cars rushing toward the city as they left. What we saw in those hours immediately after the attack was shocking. In jimmy choo strappy sandals the Washington area there were reports of possible car bombs and poisoned water systems. There were also calls for assistance especially for individuals to donate blood. We made the decision to prepare for the worst taking cash out of the bank, buying groceries, gallons of water and filling the car with gas. Later that afternoon, a friend and I traveled to the local blood blank prepared to roll up our sleeves. Once there, I witnessed first hand the amazing fortitude of my fellow Americans. Several hundred people were lined up willing to do what little they could. The turn out was so great that organizers took our names and numbers and promised to call if our help was needed. The following days were difficult for many as they learned the fate of family and friends. It seemed many had a personal connection to someone who had lost someone in the attacks. It was difficult to work. The hour long commute was even longer. There were armed troops in the streets of Washington with the smouldering Pentagon just across the Potomac River serving as an ominous backdrop. People were in a daze. A few days later, a National Day of Mourning was held with people of all faith backgrounds gathering to pray for the victims of the attacks, their families and the country. Arriving early at the parish near my office, my boss and I were a part of a congregation that overflowed the pews, the vestibule and down the steps of the large church. Throughout the liturgy watery eyes left tears trickling down cheeks and at the noon hour, when bells across the country tolled for the victims, there was silence. In the weeks after 9/11, my wife was offered a position at the Casket and the attacks had made my work raising funds for a non profit untenable. The time and circumstances seemed right so we made the decision to move to Antigonish. In the decade since, things have changed in the world and in our own lives. My wife now works at home raising five vivacious children and I work here at the Casket. The hour plus commute is now 10 minutes on a bad day. We are no longer living in a region with five million people but rather a rural area with a population closer to 20,000. On the global scale it has been a decade of war and economic uncertainty. The memories, pain, pride and unity stemming from 9/11 still remain. jimmy choo grey pumps The trip through the United States illustrated that clearly. In Maine the towns of Clifton and Eddington flew the Stars and Stripes on every light pole. At a Washington Nationals baseball game there was a tribute and standing ovation for troops. Congress on the horizon. Yet, the most moving symbol of patriotism came in Pennsylvania. In Doylestown, the county seat for Bucks County, there was a war memorial park. Flying above monuments for those who served and died in the First and Second World War, Korea, Vietnam, Iraq and other conflicts were red, white and blue banners with the names and faces of Bucks County soldiers who have been killed in the fight against terrorism.

The last 10 years have been difficult not only for jimmy choo motorcycle boots the families of victims who died that day but for those who have seen their sons and daughters go off to fight and die in a war that is often hard to explain. Whether they hail from Bucks County, PA or Orange County, California or British Columbia or Newfoundland or any area in between, as we mark the anniversary of 9/11 let us not only recall what happened that day but what has happened since.


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