Monday, September 11, 2006
Today is September 11. For generations to come, when you say the words "September Eleventh" or "Nine One One" the events of this day five years ago will be remembered. This day changed all of our lives. It is our generation's Kennedy Assassination. We all remember where we were, what we did, etc. I was at work, a co-worker's girlfriend (now his wife) called him and said a plane hit the WTC. I had an appointment with my OB, as I was about 6 months pregnant with Anna. We were sent home because our office was relatively close to the Toledo Airport and somehow our office manager got word that United Flight 93 was in Cleveland airspace and had been hijacked. Since we were near the airport, they sent us home. I assume we'd have been sent home regardless, but that was the event that provoked it first. I was glued to the television, like so many of you, for days. I couldn't watch, but I couldn't stop watching. This day changed all of us.

My friend Vanessa's husband Randy's US Army's Reserve Unit was activated and sent overseas. They were activated directly as a result of 9/11. He served us for over a year. Vanessa was here in Ohio, and we were not yet friends, had not yet met. I transferred to the office she works in and remember there was a drive to send stuff to Randy and his unit. I barely knew Vanessa then, but sent a box over there (girl scout cookies if memory serves.) Since then, Vanessa and I have become very very close friends. Randy came home and they wanted to start a family. September 11 was such a defining moment in their lives, more than mine, more than so many of us who only saw it on TV. Randy sacrificed himself, his wife, his family. For me, for all of us. He was one of the lucky ones to come home, back to all of us.

How ironic that his son shall be born today, of all days. Owen Karl Smith will be born today. Vanessa is in labor right now. I can not wait to meet Owen and tell him how lucky he is. How lucky all of us are.



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