Kaitlyn Dunaway, a home-schooled Columbia County 9-year-old, sums up the events now universally referred to as 9-11 with a brief essay:
Today is September 11 2003. Two years ago something terrible happened. A very bad man sent very bad people to hurt people. They ran two planes into the twin towers. The twin towers fell down and a lot of people lost their lives, about 3,000 of them. It was a very terrible day.
Kaitlyn, just 7 on that fateful day, belongs to a generation that will grow up to inherit a country scarred but unbeaten by terrorists. The Rev. Cynthia Taylor of the Church of the Holy Comforter in Evans, spoke of the sadness and vulnerability of that changed world in addressing the 9-11 commemoration Thursday outside Columbia Countys Justice Center.
Taylor also wonders aloud if the dwindling crowds for 9-11 observances this past week are a sign that the terrorists attacks are forgotten: Wheres everybody else?
The answer? Theyre doing the normal things of life - and that is as it should be, Taylor says. Getting back to normal is an important step for anyone involved in a traumatic situation, whether its a death in the family or serious accident. Taylors timely message is that we havent forgotten. Weve instead demonstrated that, as a nation, America is strong enough to survive because the good in our country is still worth fighting for.
Its kids like Kaitlyn who make that fight worthy. We havent forgotten; weve just returned to a normal, if scarier, world.
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