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Let Us Never Forget
There’s an old saying that time heals all wounds. Perhaps that’s so; perhaps it’s not. We lose too many to unseen wounds, like Post-Traumatic Stress. Whether we heal or whether we remain deeply scarred, we must remember.
We must remember not just for the lost, but we must remember for the living. And we must remember especially for those who will live in the years to come. There’s another old saying that history repeats itself. Yet some history must not be repeated. The hope of humanity yet to come requires that we remember, and that we never forget.
As the days and months since the attacks of September 11, 2001 become years and decades, collective memories dim. Some wounds have healed, and some have not. Yet if we hope for a better future for generations to come, this is one day we must remember. And I do remember. I was there, and I survived.
I survived, and yet still need healing. And I’m not alone in that.
I remember the sound when the first plane hit. It sounded like a New York City garbage truck hitting a pothole.
I remember one of my co-workers saying “I didn’t know there was a Yankee parade today” because our office overlooked the canyon of heroes and it looked like a ticker tape parade. I remember when we realized those papers were on fire.
I remember how, by the time I got out of the Exchange on that morning, the first tower had already fallen.
I remember how we couldn’t see more than six feet ahead of us from all the ash in the air.
I remember when we heard fighter jets overhead we didn’t know whose they were.
I remember walking with that mass of humanity up Third Avenue to my apartment on the Upper East Side and seeing a pilgrimage walking across the Brooklyn Bridge and out of the city over the course of the day.
I remember being awestruck by the men and women who ran into the chaos to protect and defend us that day. The sacrifices they made inspire awe in me still.
Whether we’ve healed, or must yet heal, our duty to those to come is to remember. In remembering, we keep alive the hope that this piece of history will never be repeated.
Let us never forget.
Chris Meek was at the New York Board of Trade in the World Trade Center and the American Stock Exchange on the morning of September 11, 2001. He is currently a participant in the inaugural Stand-To Veteran Leadership Program and the Senior Director of Global Relationship Management at S&P Global. His nonprofit, SoldierStrong, provides medical devices to injured veterans as well as scholarship funds to help supplement the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
Christopher Meek is the Senior Director of Global Relationship Management at S&P Global. With participation in Stand-To, Christopher is continuing to work on his nonprofit which provides medical devices to injured veterans as well as provide scholarship funds to help supplement the Post-9/11 GI Bill.Full Bio
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