Friday, September 9, 2011

A Ray of Light for America’s Darkest Day

By Megan Wagner

0000381940-030September 11, 2001. A day which we will all vividly remember where we were and what we were doing.  As a 20-year-old college sophomore, I awoke at 8:45 a.m. to begin my Tuesday classes. After turning on my laptop and pouring myself a bowl of cereal, I flipped on the TV to watch the morning news and saw something out of the movie “Independence Day.”  It took everything I had to unglue myself from the TV and go to class. However, when I arrived, I found hundreds of my classmates crowded around the lobby TVs, watching the latest details unfold about the Pentagon and Pennsylvania attacks. America’s worse nightmare had come true - terrorism had hit our soil.

In the coming years, Ground Zero, which was once depicted as an ugly and painful scar in our modern day society, is now healing by the rebuilding of a new memorial, museum and Freedom Tower. NOVA_9_11_skyline.jpgIf you’re planning to reflect on the events of 9/11 at home, there are several special programs on WNED television and radio dedicated to the anniversary.

WNED-TV will be airing an evening of special programming on Sept. 11 beginning at 8 p.m.  PBS Newshour presents “America Remembers 9/11” at 8 p.m. followed by Great Performances presents ”The New York Philharmonic 10th Anniversary Concert for 9/11” at 9:30 p.m.  Afterwards, NOVA re-airsEngineering Ground Zeroat 10:30 p.m.


WNED AM 970 will also feature special anniversary coverage from NPRSpecial coverage begins Sunday morning at 8 a.m.  This will include services and ceremonies at Ground Zero, the Pentagon and Shanksville, PA.  From 2 – 5 p.m., NPR’s Neal Conan will be joined by commentator Ted Koppel. He will also talk with first responders, victim’s family members and survivors of the attacks and take calls from listeners.  At 8 p.m., WNED AM 970 will air “A Concert For Hope.”  President Obama will speak during the concert at the Kennedy Center in Washington.  It will include performances by Patti Labelle, Alan Jackson and Denyce Graves.

To this day, I still have a hard time wrapping my head around what happened that day, as do many people who merely witnessed the attacks unfold through the television.  They’re such unbelievably devastating events in U.S. History, yet through the darkness, Americans showed such resiliency, patriotic pride and, above all, the refusal to live their lives in fear. While looking back and honoring those who tragically lost their lives that day, we simultaneously look forward with hope and optimism that we can rebuild and shine on as a country.

Where were you on 9/11 and how do you plan on honoring the 10th anniversary?

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