Yahoo! is asking Americans how September 11 changed them. Below is an account from a reader.
Ten years later, the emotions of 9/11 are still very raw. Because my daughter, who was 24 years old at the time, is a survivor of the south tower; because she worked on the 69th floor and then on the 44th floor when the second plane hit, the events have affected me more personally.
We lived an hour and a half north of NY that day. For the first year, I wept, and I sought counseling. Talking about the events to anyone who would listen and writing about them has helped, but there are reminders everywhere and I still weep.
My daughter has moved on, married and is extremely happy now. I realized over the years how proud I am of her and how strong a woman she was on that day and has become. I have two children who now have PTSD, my daughter who has the images of that day engraved in her mind and my son who served a year in Afghanistan.
I am one of the fortunate ones to hug them, call them, talk to them and tell them I love them. My husband and I moved to Colorado four years ago from NY. I wanted to do something in honor of the fallen so last year I decided to do the Stair Climb at Red Rocks Amphitheater with the Denver Metro Fire Department.
We climb the perimeter of the amphitheater 9 times around to equal the number of stairs the firefighters climbed that day. I am doing this again this year on September 11. Firefighters wear full gear that day and it gives a new perspective as to how the firefighters must have felt on 9/11 climbing those towers. My daughter is planning to donate a paver at the new memorial and have it engraved. Two of my daughter’s second-grade teachers read an interview that my daughter had done on 9/14/2011 in a local Wisconsin paper and they have become extremely close ever since, even attending her wedding this year in California.
They feel that her story put a personal face on the whole tragedy. They even had their 5th grade students write her a personal letter within 3 weeks of 9/11. Myself and my daughter flew to Wisconsin 6 months later to surprise the teachers and students. My daughter bought all the students a T-shirt that said, “I love NY.” This was a personal and emotional bond that would never had happened if not for this event.