Monday, September 11, 2023

9/11 - 22 years later, we must Never Forget

A year ago, on 9/11, I wrote this for the back of The Drummer:

It’s September 11, 2022 as I started this. I could’ve waited until all work on The Drummer was complete, but I think today is really appropriate for Michaela’s story of grief and healing. 

I didn’t lose anyone close to me in war, but I am the daughter and niece and cousin and descendant of veterans going back to the American Revolution, so our military and their families mean something. 

Tech Guy and I still have a friend serving in the US Army now.

Gold Star Families have made the ultimate sacrifice—their beloved serviceman or woman didn’t come home alive, with 4418 US military casualties in Afghanistan and 7000 service members lost in combat in the War on Terror.

Four times that many veterans have committed suicide.

In fact, a recent study by America's Warrior Partnership found the rate may be 44 veteran suicides per day. If you’re suffering, please reach out!

9/11 is a day a lot of Americans have all but forgotten twenty-one years after those horrific attacks. I’m sure I wasn’t alone in seeing less postings of commemoration this year than in years past. We say “never forget” on 9/11, but we also used to say “never again”. 2,977 lives were lost on 9/11, leaving nearly 3000 children with permanently-absent parents.

The victims’ remains are still being identified twenty-one years later.

9/11 first responders face increased risk of cancer after being exposed to toxins at Ground Zero. Over 2000 deaths are linked to 9/11-related illnesses and over 3400 people enrolled in the World Trade Center Health Care Program have died.

Did you know only fourteen states mandate 9/11 teachings in their curriculum?

We can’t ensure future generations remain vigilant against terrorism if we don’t teach them what can happen and why and who made the ultimate sacrifice. Author Jim Serger put together a coffee table book titled 9:11 A Time to Always Remember filled with stories of Americans from all over the country sharing what happened to them that day and the T2T 9/11 Institute has educational resources about 9/11 for children.

There are many stories of bravery from that day, and since, large and small. Please share them with your children so the memories of their heroism and sacrifices will live on.

Veteran mental health resources

Charities supporting Gold Star spouses and children today are:
Tunnel to Towers
The Gold Star Family Home Program, launched in September 2018, honors the legacy of those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country. The Foundation will provide a mortgage-free home to surviving spouses with young children.

Gary Sinise Foundation
Gary Sinise Foundation Snowball Express serves the children and surviving spouse of fallen military heroes. We are committed to programming and support that holds space to honor their fallen heroes while also helping create new memories as they move forward. 

Folds of Honor
Since 2007, the Folds of Honor has carried forth this singular, noble mission: To provide educational scholarships to spouses and children of America’s fallen and disabled service-members. Honor their Sacrifice. Educate their Legacy.

Active Valor
Valor Adventures is a program designed exclusively for Gold Star families. Through this program, Gold Star children are paired one-on-one with their very own veteran mentor for a day of extraordinary adventure. Together, they get to participate in mission-based adventures that promote problem solving, community building, self confidence, critical thinking, and hands-on fun.


The National Memorial Day Concert is a real event on PBS stations each year:
On the eve of Memorial Day, a star-studded lineup graces the stage for one of PBS’ highest-rated programs. This multi-award-winning television event honors the military service and sacrifice of all our men and women in uniform, their families, and those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.

Resources for Veterans and Gold Star Families


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave a name you can be addressed by.