September 11, 2001 a day that forever changed America and the history of the world.
Every adult can tell you where they were the moment that they heard we were attacked and our innocence was stripped from us.
Terrorists had plotted for years to destroy us, “the infidel”, and that morning they violently attacked America.
I still get a sick feeling in my gut as I remember watching the news and seeing the planes flown into the towers in NY. Numb and in a state of shock I watched as people wrenching from the extreme temperatures of the fire and explosions, knowing death was imminent, chose to jump from 80 floors up rather than suffer the slow torture of burning to death.
America watched as buildings crumpled to the ground and smoke and pollutants surrounded the cities hiding the death and mass casualties.
America watched people running for their lives filled with panic and fear. America watched brave First Responders, Fireman, Policeman, Paramedics and Volunteers ran into the chaos, danger and destruction trying to find someone who needed help.
In the hours and days that followed, as a nation, we watched as families tried to find their loved ones and we prayed for those who had lost loved ones.
We wondered if there were more attacks being planned against our homeland and America offered prayers.
We tried to process what had happened and figure out our defense. We tried to comprehend what kind of an evil enemy attacks the innocent.
My oldest son was serving in the Marines, my daughter’s husband was in the Army, Marc was a Navy SEAL, and my brother was in the Air force. I could see the handwriting on the wall and knew I would have family members deployed.
As a nation we had tried every other alternative and our last resort would be to deploy our military.
If we didn’t we would just be sending an invitation that we were weak and that the radical terrorists could inflict more death and damage on America.
As Americans we have the finest and bravest men and women who stood up and said we will stand in the gap for the innocent lives that were stolen from us that morning of 9-11.
Our troops chose to defend their honor and show their families and our country that we will never forget. They resolved to bring justice, defend our great nation, and protect America and her freedoms.
We will never forget 9-11 and those innocent lives that the terrorist had targeted that day to be killed. We are so grateful for our defenders both in public service and military service who came together in the midst of one of the greatest tragedies in America.
We will never forget each of our fallen warriors, like my son Marc Alan Lee who proudly wore the military uniform with pride and died in Iraq and Afghanistan. They were defending each and every one of those who the enemy so violently killed on 9-11, they were defending our honor.
Yet we will also not forget that as a nation Americans came together and stood strong, tall, united and showed the world that we were not a people to be messed with.
We fell to our knees and recognized that we are resilient and strong because we are “One nation under God.”
Yes we are a Christian nation and we recognized that our strength comes from God and Americans prayed continually for comfort, peace and strength.
Today we remember and wrap our arms around each family who has lost a loved one on 9-11 or the battlefields of Iraq or Afghanistan. We will never forget and will keep you in our hearts and prayers forever.
Because Americans remember, we have resolved to stand resilient, even stronger and prouder. The enemy thought they were attacking America and what we stand for, they did not strike America, they struck individual places.
As Americans we stood united and looked the radical Islamic terrorists in the face and refused to be threatened or intimidated by them.
Americans buried our loved ones and comforted one another. We confronted and hunted down those demonic terrorists who wanted to bring America to their knees.
We showed the world who we are and what American Exceptionalism is. We continue to live our lives and teach our children who Americans are the history of our great beginnings and our founding fathers.
Inspired by America’s mighty warriors who heroically defended us and gave their lives fighting the radical Islamic terrorists we continue in the fight for freedom.
We are America, we will not falter, we will not fail, we will not be moved!
Remembering and Standing Strong
Editor’s Note: Debbie Lee is a leading spokesperson for U.S. troops fighting in the war on terrorism, for their families and families of the fallen. She founded a non-profit organization, America’s Mighty Warrior, in response to her son’s last letter home.
Her son, Marc Alan Lee, was the first Navy Seal to lose his life in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Lee is also founder of Move America Forward. www.moveamericaforward.org
Insurgents in Ramada, Iraq killed Marc, 28, August 2, 2006 while on patrol. Debbie is available for speaking venues and can be reached by email at email@example.com or through her website.