A very moving story was released on the website Cincinnatti.com. Given that we are just days away from the 10th anniversary of September 11th, 2001, it seemed appropriate to report on this story. Below you will find an exerpt from the story. Please click on the link above to read more the details.
She was an off-duty flight attendant from Oakley out for an evening stroll in Paris.
He was a school kid in Delhi Township, a sixth-grader stuck in his morning social studies class.
Then the planes slammed into the twin towers. And the world changed forever.
The events of 9/11 eventually linked the lives of the flight attendant, Tanya Hoggard, and the student, Aaron Walsh. The tragedy showed them that one person can make a difference in helping good triumph over evil. And they decided, unbeknownst to each other, to spread the word.
A month after the attacks, Walsh wrote a poem in his school notebook. Hoping to make sense of that horrible day in history, he began with the words:
I hold in my hands …
The dust and wreckage of the towers.
Even though I wasn’t there,
I can still feel it.
It has damaged my hands with dirt.
It has damaged my heart with sorrow.
It has damaged my body with fear,
and it has damaged my life with war.
The poem wound up going around the world. That happened after it landed in Hoggard’s hands.
Thanks to her, Walsh’s work came to rest in the collection of the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. The memorial, located in the footprints of the World Trade Center, opens Sunday. The museum opens in 2012 on the 11th anniversary of 9/11.
As Walsh wrote his poem in a Delhi Middle School classroom, Hoggard stood under a tent at Ground Zero. She was a volunteer on the chow line. She would fly to New York on her off-days – using 30 of them in three months – to serve meals to the workers sifting through the rubble.
“I didn’t go because of my job,” she said, “or because flight attendants were killed on 9/11. I went because my job enabled me to go. I could fly in and out for free on the same day and help out.”
Thank you to all those brave men and women who helped put order back to a country thrown into chaos. And to those who lost family or friends, our thoughts are with you this weekend. We should all take a few minutes to reflect on just how much our country has changed since that terrible day.
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