Someone on Twitter tweeted this morning: Never Forget" has to be the dumbest iconic phrase of our time."
Someone else tweeted, "Remembering 9-11, every object has a story."
The first, I don't know, there are no words. The second, the images that tweet bring to mind can break your heart all over again.
On the 5th anniversary of 9-11, a blogger project was created in order to personalize each person who died that day in New York, Washington DC and Shanksville Pa. The idea was every blogger from anywhere in the country who wanted to be a part of this was sent a name and it was then up to that blogger to post a remembrance. I was part of that was was given Walter Matuza and here is his story. As an update, his son also named Walter Matuza was interviewed last year while a college student at Seton Hall.
Then, in 2011, Art Hill in Forest Park was the site of an immense undertaking-flags put out for each victim of 9-11 with each flag having the name and occupation and where he/she died on that day.
At the end of the week, the flags were offered for sale and we were able to get one. The name on our flag is that of Steven Coakley, a New York City fireman who died in the World Trade Center South Tower. He had finished his shift at A-Station and was getting ready to head home when the bells went off. He hopped on the back of a firetruck and headed over to help. The last anyone saw him, he was helping people out of the tower. His helmet was found a couple of days after but it wasn't until November that his remains were uncovered.
This is why we remember and why it is not the dumbest thing ever said. Every year on 9-11 I put Steven Coakley's flag out in our front yard and every national holiday it returns. Never forget.