09.11.2001 – We Will Never Forget ~ This American flag was an artifact recovered from Ground Zero, at site of the World Trade Center twin towers in New York City, where the United States of America was attacked on September 11, 2001. A traveling exhibit was presented at the Washington State History Museum for a short time during the late summer of 2005. On August 24, I went to the museum by myself to view the exhibit. The room was dark, somber and quiet. Among the artifacts displayed, all moving emotionally, the two that I remember most are a piece of airliner fuselage with an intact passenger window and this battered American Flag recovered at Ground Zero. As I walked among those pieces of sad American history, I stood before each one, tears streaming down my face at the memory of what happened. I was so moved by this flag, I took a photo with my cell phone. Obviously in 2005 the cell phone camera resolution was so low that it is a poor quality image, poor or not I am still emotionally impacted by this surviving American Flag. I can remember the exact moment I saw the first news report at 06:10 (Pacific Daylight Time, we are three hours later than New York City) twenty-four minutes after the first plane struck the North Tower, then listening to the radio in my school bus all morning, the sense of numbness at sheer disbelief of it all. The sorrow for those who were lost. May God bless the families, friends, survivors, police and rescue personnel and bystanders who still carry the emotional scars of who they lost and what they saw. America is still the land of the free, because of the brave.
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