Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Flight 93

All I can say is that having D home for a short time was wonderful! It was short and the time flew by but it was great! It was a reminder of just how lucky I really am.

I have been waiting for months for this movie. While I really do want to see it I know it is going to be very emotional. I just like almost every other American remember just where I was on 9-11 and exactly what I was doing. In my case it isn't very hard to forget. I was standing on a beach with my (now) father-in-law who I had just met for the first time. We together were watching the submarine that my then boyfriend (now husband) was coming home on. This day I will remember for the rest of my life...for many reasons.
As we were standing on the beach with the other parents, gfs, children and wives of the men aboard that boat we had no idea what was going in the world. We didn't have a clue that America would be forever changed as we stood there on the beach on what is normally a very happy occasion. It was homecoming. The most important day of the year to every sailor and every family member. The boat had been deployed for 12 weeks and there wasn't one person present who wasn't ready to throw their arms around their loved one and welcome them home.
We watched the boat enter the channel to make the trip to the pier on the base and as it started to disappear again the group we were with decided it was time to make the short drive back to the the base so that we could met them at the pier. We had been very excited to be on the beach that day...watching the sub come in form there is the most amazing thing. After such a long separation we were just moments away from being reunited.
When we all settled into the car and were just pulling away from the beach there was lots of excited chatter going on in the van we were riding in. We were being escorted by another wife and there were several of us. Her cell phone rang and of course we the passengers were so excited that we paid little attention to her conversation. Until something in her tone and voice changed...then she had our full attention. She calmly explained that the caller (her friend) asked her is she had the TV on. Of course her answer was no. They reported to her that a plane had just flown into the world trade center. Of course at that moment we didn't know it wasn't an accident. I was in an instant state of shock, fear, and disbelief. We turned the radio on and quietly listened to the broadcast finding hard to believe what we were hearing. By the time we arrived at the gate to the base they had shut down the entire facility...which meant nobody got on and nobody got off. There were barricades like I have never seen and marines armed with rifles. It look just like something out of a movie. The was just the beginning.

At the time I live over a 100 miles away from the base but there was no way I was going to leave until I knew where D was and what was going on. We went back the hotel room where his father was staying and we immediately turned on the TV. What we saw was even harder to believe that what we had already heard. By that time they were replaying the video of the 2nd plane hitting. I have never felt as devastated as I did at the moment that I first saw the footage. Hearing something simply does not have the same impact as visual confirmation.

For hours we had no idea where the sub was, where D was or what was going on with him. After waiting as long as I possible could without going completely insane I (through not so conventional methods) found out that the second they hit the pier they were immediately turned around and sent back out. It would end up that they would return (10 days later) the day before his father was to fly back home. I spend most of the time with my future father in law. We were simply passing the time hoping they would soon return.

There is really nothing more that can be said about the tragedy of that day. I will not forget the feelings I felt during that time but they can't possibly compare to what the friends and love ones of those lost felt and I'm sure still feel.

The Heroes

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