Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 years ago...

...changed our family, like every other american family, forever! i will never forget where i was when the "news" of 9/11/01 happened. cedarville was still on quarters, so unlike all my friends from high school, i had a few more days at home before leaving for college. that morning, i was still in bed when my mom woke me up to tell me that "something happened in new york, come watch the tv while i take your siblings to school. let me know what happens." i came down and sat in front of the tv totally stunned, then watched as the next plane plowed into the world trade center. i will never forget calling my mom totally freaked out re-capping what i had been watching! as a family, we were prayerful and concerned for those affected. it became a little more real, when 4 days later, mom and i were in the chapel at cedarville...we met a father of a fellow freshman who had a brother in new york that they had yet to hear from. i remember kneeling there with so many others, praying for God's peace for this family and so many others who were looking for loved ones in the chaos.

during that same week, our family was going through our own tradgedy. events that rocked us forever. being away from home while there was so much going on in and around our family was miserable. i wanted to "be there" for my family and cedarville felt so far away. that was the first time that i was not ok with going away to school. God became a very real and constant force in my life for the first time. both 9/11 and this family crisis pushed me to understand, truely, that evil is a very real thing and only God can help pull us together to get through it. without His constant guidance through the turmoil, we would all be in a world of hurt!!

in september 2001, my brother (jonathan) was in 11th grade. if he had been just a little older he would have immediately left school and joined the armed servcies. jonathan had always wanted to be a soldier (i can not even tell you how many of my barbies were shot down by his army men!) and the attack on our country 10 years ago sealed the deal for him. right after graduating from high school, he went on to boot camp and basic training and eventually on to serve 2 tours (one in iraq and one in afghanistan) with the 101st airborne division of the army...he was a screaming eagle!! i am so proud of my brother for his courage and bravery, especially during war time. he gladly signed up, with so many other fine men and women, to proudly serve and protect our country's freedom from terrorism. while our family prayed and worried constantly for his safety, we all knew he was right he should be and was trained to be...on the front lines fighting for us! by God's grace, he came home each time...a true hero!!!

the events that happened 10 years ago rocked my world in more ways than one, but i am so grateful to be living in a country that is proud to defend who we are! i am so grateful for the men and women, like jonathan, who have sacrificed so much for this country. may we never forget all that has brought us to where we are! God bless america!!

i pledge allegiance, to the flag, of the united states of america, and to the republic, for which it stands: one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. Amen.

at jonathan's "turning blue" ceremony. ft. benning grorgia

just before shipping out for tour #1. pictured with beal, his best friend! they did boot camp, basic training, both tours and blackwater together!!

2nd tour, on patrol.

2nd tour, the little dog they found on patrol.
this still brings tears to my eyes...welcome home, paco!!! jonathan with his family!

blessings, ALo

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