A Different Perspective


Baseball is called the great American pastime. To me it is and always will be. Sports have the ability to transcend events and can even help a nation heal. That was the case a decade ago.

This post won’t be like many of the 9/11 articles you will read today or even already read. You’ll read how 9/11 and sports came together to aid a hurting country. I’m having a little different perspective from that. It may not be a completely original thought, but I hope you can spare me this space for such. I urge you to read this.

There’s a saying that I’m sure we’ve all heard. Time heals all wounds. To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure that’s a true statement. I am sure that September 11, 2001 holds different meanings for different people. Some lost a child. Some lost a parent. Some lost a grandchild. Some lost a life long friend. I was among the fortunate ones that did not, but the events from that day would (in my mind) have an effect on me.

You see, four years ago, my daughter was married. While the day was hectic and crazy (wouldn’t be a typical wedding day now would it?), I had no inclination of how my life would be changed.

December of 2007 (if my brain is recalling correctly) I was informed by my son-in-law of a decision. It was a decision he had been mulling over for a while. He was going to enlist in the United States Army. I couldn’t have told you that day as to why he made that decision. I heard the norm. “I want to take care of my family” was the common refrain. I think it goes a little deeper than that.

I’ve never held a conversation with my son-in-law about he “real” reason for his enlistment, but I can state that upon conferring with his father and my daughter that the events of 9/11 have a little to do with it. It may have spurred his decision. Until this moment, no one has ever heard (or in this case, read) of my take on this despite the conversation with the aforementioned individuals. I never led on as to my thoughts.

After two tours in Iraq, he is home. He suffered no physical injury while serving his 18 months away from us. Our families are extremely fortunate.

I have been blessed in every sense of the word. I have a grandson and a granddaughter. They are constantly in my thoughts as being 2,000 miles away does little to help. But I remember them. I look at their pictures daily. And I would be lying if I said I never weep while looking at those pictures. In saying that, I cannot imagine how those families that did lose a loved during the attacks of 9/11 feel whenever they view pictures or video of one that perished. I will be able to see my son-in-law, daughter and grandchildren again. Those that did suffer the loss of a loved from that day will not.

And that is in my mind, too. A lot. Not just today.

On this day, I urge all to take just a second and, in your own way, remember those families impacted by 9/11/2001. If you have a friend or family member that has been impacted by 9/11, reach out to them. Send an email. Leave a message on Facebook. Tweet them. Whatever means possible. Let them know you remember and you care. It doesn’t matter if you agree with what has transpired since then. You just never know what other thoughts will cross your mind.

For example, here’s something that’s now circulating on Facebook.

"Due to “lack of room”, NYC Police Officers, Port Authority Police Officers and FDNY Firefighters are not “invited” to the 10th anniversary of 9/11 at Ground Zero. Funny – they weren’t invited on that day in 2001, either – they just “showed up” and became our heroes. Please re-post if you think they belong MORE than the politicians who are invited."

No, I’m not going to go all political on you. That’s not my style.

But in writing my first draft for this post, I did realize something.

We still hear of those that were the first responders in New York City. We still hear of those that willingly aided others for their safety, yet forsaking their own. We call those people heroes. And we should like the status I have quoted. Those that have elected to serve our country are called heroes, too. It should always be that way.

Well, my realization was this. I have long regarded my father as my personal hero. I will always hold him as a hero, but I have another hero…my son-in-law.