And then the Pentagon was hit. My partner's parents lived near there, and could feel the ground move from the impact. My partner's father, a retired Army general who had worked in the Pentagon, lost a long-time, valued staff member that day...
Sadly, she was not the only one. By the time the counts were done, we lost over 2,000 souls that day, at the Trade Towers in New York, at the Pentagon, and in Pennsylvania.
One of the heroes in Pennsylvania that fateful day was named Mark Bingham. You may not have heard of him, but he was one of the four who helped to bring down the plane in the field. Others have had their stories told. His should be, too. Melissa Etheridge did just that in this video:
In recognition of this anniversary, and for all those who were lost, all those who were made heroes that day, I leave you with this prayer by The Rev. A. Powell Davies, a Unitarian minister who served the Washington, D.C. area years ago (I have adapted it slightly:
The love we can no longer give to our beloved, may we give it to those who need it. May our compassion be deeper, our sympathy wider, Let our sorrow melt away our bitterness and teach us to be gentle. May we be saved from frozen-ness of heart. If so much that is precious can so soon be lost, let us cherish what remains; and let us be the nurture of things precious in the lives of others.
Whatever we have known and loved is ours while life shall last. May we see that what we love becomes a part of us, is interfused with our lives, blended with mind and memory and joined to our souls. May we resolve that the good we knew in those who have gone from us shall live in us and be passed on from one generation to another.
When we do not know and cannot see, may we put our trust in things we cannot see. Even in this life, all about us and within us, there is mystery. Yet the mystery shines, and in its light we see the beautiful and (the) good. May we have faith that it is not otherwise beyond the limit of our sight: that beauty endures, that goodness (and love) reign...