TN50#37, 9/11 20 Years Later, 13 September 2021

Hi Team,

Happy Monday and welcome to The Next 50 #37.

20 Years ago today, Carly and I were in Mexico.  We had gone down to celebrate our “better late than never” honeymoon and arrived somewhere around the 7th of September 2001.  Our vacation was extended 3 days as all the commercial airplanes in the world were grounded including our return flight to North Carolina.  I was still a fairly new operator at the unit with less than 2 years in the teams.  Carly and I didn’t know exactly how or what but we knew our whole world was never going to be the same.  It is hard to believe that 20 years have passed.

The situation in Afghanistan and the 20 Year Anniversary of 9/11 has made for some interesting conversations lately.  Bush 43’s words were exactly what many of my fellow veterans needed to hear right now.  Here is the excerpt of his remarks from Saturday, 11 September that I am specifically talking about.

“After 9/11, millions of brave Americans stepped forward and volunteered to serve in the Armed Forces. The military measures taken over the last 20 years to pursue dangers at their source have led to debate. But one thing is certain: We owe an assurance to all who have fought our nation’s most recent battles. Let me speak directly to veterans and people in uniform: The cause you pursued at the call of duty is the noblest America has to offer. You have shielded your fellow citizens from danger. You have defended the beliefs of your country and advanced the rights of the downtrodden. You have been the face of hope and mercy in dark places. You have been a force for good in the world. Nothing that has followed — nothing — can tarnish your honor or diminish your accomplishments. To you, and to the honored dead, our country is forever grateful.”
I hope that these words provide a profound answer to those who have, in recent weeks in particular, asked whether ‘it was worth it’.”

I can’t think of anyone in the world who would have spent more time reflecting on 9/11 and what we committed to as a nation, these last 20 years, than President Bush, 43. I pray he hears the echo of his words personally.

I have thought a lot about the wars and 9/11 recently and I find myself holding 2 interesting thoughts that don’t jive well.

  • 20 Years of Sadness and Anger over all the loss, especially those who lost loved ones and who’s lives were turned upside down.
  • 20 Years of Satisfaction and Joy over the experiences that have made me who I am today. I don’t know if anyone who has known me for more than 20 years would agree but, in my opinion, I am a better human being now because of all the experiences I have lived through and actions I have taken since 9/11.  (For those of you who really know me, I know, I know, I absolutely still have a lot of work to do!)

This could simply be my rose-colored rear-view mirror; I have been accused by more than one person of being too optimistic, but I don’t think so.

What do you think?  Are you a better human being because of 9/11?

As always, I would love it if you shared your thoughts on this entry and please share this with anyone who might find it interesting.

Have a good one, Alex

2022 Murph Count: 14