Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Capt MJ, Sep 11, 2018.
A selfie of my lapel pin today.
I have a ritual I have done every year on this day, since then.
One of the things I try to do is talk to strangers more often, and to make a more concerted effort to help someone on this day.
I'm still a Boy Scout leader - so I still try to do a good turn daily - but what struck me after that day so many years ago, was that strangers would talk to you more. It seemed like the average person was more of an American (in the sense that we are all in this together) in the weeks following that day. There was less giving the one-fingered salute in traffic, and more decency. I thought it was great and knew it couldn't last, but enjoyed it at a time when life was making things tough on everyone.
We are all one people on this rock, but we never act like it. I would be happy to see just us Americans act like we are one people. Imagine the things we could accomplish. I am doing my part. I just need everyone else to lean into it, quite a bit more.
There are 1.3 million on active duty, 800,000 in the reserves, and 4,400 Mids leaning into it today, and I am proud of them.
Class of "78" lost our class president Ken "Waldo" Waldie on 9/11. He was a passenger on one of the planes that hit the towers.
Personally, I lost a former Commander and mentor, RADM Bud Flagg who was on the flight that hit the Pentagon. RADM Flagg had been my boss
when I held my first Reserve Command and he and I had gotten together a few months before 9/11 and were planning to meet up again at the end
of Sept in Reno to touch base for some Navy career advice.
I took this pic from the western shore of the Hudson River later in 2001.
I was quite struck by the Flight 93 memorial and its use of wind and sound to represent the voices of those who perished while fighting back against evil. Thought I would share.
These attacks mark a watershed in our history and everyone remembers where they were and what was going on that morning. I am glad that this day and the sacrifices of those killed immediately (and those who continue to suffer health issues today) are not forgotten.
Every event of that day is indelibly etched in my mind. I immediately knew in my gut that the Shanksville plane was a thwarted attack. What I most remember is the conversation I had with my eight year old boy that night about the numbers of people who died that day, back when I could still hold him in my lap. It's certainly a day I'll never forget.
My kids were 3 and 4. I remember it was an absolutely beautiful day and I was at work talking on the phone to a coworker who happened to be in NY that day on business. When he told me a plane had hit the tower I was thinking a private pilot in some small 2 seater or something of that nature. Once I turned on the news and realized what was really going on I had the most powerful need to get home to my family that I have ever felt in my life.
I was the senior Corpsman in the world's premier incident response force that day. Can't say much more about that. I now have high school students in my classes who weren't even yet born. My own kids were in high school then and are now in their 30s. Crazily enough, my son is still fighting a war I retired from. He's been operational for seven straight years and keeps raising his hand for the next plane and ship leaving town. The wife hates that but I quietly urge him on. He'll get a B billet some day I'm sure.
I teach in a school just south and across the Potomac from the Pentagon. The administration couldn't even take a minute to honor those lost on that day. I'm not surprised but feel gut punched by the lack of giving a darn.
A reminder of the heroes who went in but did not come out. This is what Leadership is all about :
Tomorrow, the first child born after 9/11 will be eligible to enlist in a military still fighting the war this day started.
Wow...and still the conspirators have not been brought to justice.
That's a eye opening thought.
I'm wondering what percent of those who commissioned or enlisted due to the events of 9/11 are still active duty. My twins are currently 19. To them 9/11 is history not a real-life memory. We have spent nearly their entire life at war. I'm a child of the 70's/80's. I vaguely remember Vietnam but can certainly remember those years when things were relatively peaceful here at home. For our kids they don't know anything except war. In the not to distant future those who were wearing uniforms on 9/11 and those who put one on after that day will be retiring and that memory will be relegated to the history books.
RADM Flagg’s son Marc and I are USNA classmates and good friends. I caught up with him last week in Hawaii for the Navy football game. We smoked a few cigars, had a few drinks and reminisced about the good old days at NAS Miramar.
Marc is a man of action and after losing both his parents on Flight 98*, he did what many Americans do after tragedy...turned it into a cause with action and results. Because of his efforts....lobbying and testifying before congress, the Federal Flight Deck Officer (FFDO) program was created. This program, under supervision of the Federal Air Marshall Service, has armed thousands of flight deck crew members, trained to defend the cockpit of their aircraft. The FFDO program is voluntary...it includes psychological screening, a background check with references and intensive self defense and firearms training at a federal law enforcement facility.
Marc has truly made an impact on our nations collective effort to protect and defend one of our most valuable transportation and infrastructure systems. In the words of Paul Harvey, “now you know the rest of the story.”
* Moderator note: The flight that crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11 was American. Flight 77.
Thanks for the correction...was thinking one thing and typing another. I hate typing on an iPad....
To be totally correct, it was American Flight 77 that hit the Pentagon on 9/11. I believe Bud Flagg and his wife were traveling to Los Angeles for a family wedding. He was a passenger that day, not one of the pilots.
Note corrected above. That's what I get for rushing through a Mod edit in between client meetings.
Separate names with a comma.