The day started like any other. I’m in the Mrs. Ford’s 4th grade class at  Davidson Elementary.

The day was going on like any other, but then the teachers started acting weird. Frantic. Then I was called to the front office for early dismissal. Weird? I didn’t have a dentist appointment did I?

As I head to the front office to meet my momma, there are tons of parents there. Everyone is leaving school early? Why does my momma have that look on her face? Why is Shelby getting out of class early too?

Questions. Full of them. As any person would be at this point.

I don’t remember the car ride home, the next thing I remember is sitting in front of the tv with my brother and sister eating our lunchables and watching the horrific footage. Even as a 4th grader, I knew this was very bad. This would have terrible repercussions for families. My daddy wasn’t home. My daddy was supposed to be flying home that day, he was gone on business. My teacher knew he was gone, she called my momma asking if he was okay. He was, his flight was cancelled for the day though and I just really wanted him home because I always felt safer.

We watched the first tower get hit. Then the second. The footage played over and over. Momma was crying. Should I cry? I can’t wrap my mind around it.

Fast forward 11 years. I am now a junior in college. 20 years old. And this day brings out those memories every year. I was fortunate enough not to have any personal loss, but everyone felt some kind of loss that day.

We ached as a country. As a united nation.

You cry for people you don’t know.

You pray for people you don’t know.

Because on this day we are reminded that we are all Americans. That we all experienced a terrible pain.

Doesn’t matter what background, religion, race you may be.

We are all Americans.

I am praying for the families who were directly affected and lost loved ones to these senseless acts of terrorism and I am thankful for the men and women who lost their lives protecting our country.

This day will never be forgotten.

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