September 11, 2001: 10 Years Later

Here I stand ten years later outside my house raising the American Flag, and the New England Patriots flag for that matter.  Today of all days it is significant that I do such a thing.  I forgot I had taken it down for the hurricane a couple weeks ago.  As I watched the news coverage of the memorials, I thought, “my word my flag is not flying!”.  I remember that day very well in fact.  As I stood outside and looked up at Old Glory I realized today is very much

like that day.  Bright sunshine, blue sky, a quiet calm over the air.  None of us sitting at 706 Milford Road at PC Connection had any idea what was about to happen.  I was squatting in a cube when someone stood up and yelled “A plane just hit the World Trade Center in New York!”.

Like everyone else we thought it was a horrible air traffic accident, so at first we mostly went about our business thinking we can get the news as it comes.  Then……the second plane hit, then the Pentagon, and finally the field in Pennsylvania.  Finally the horror of what went down hit everyone.  We scrambled for news, there was no TV’s available with cable hookups. The Internet was flooded, you could not even get to to find out anything.  We were almost cut off from the coverage for hours until finally management put TV’s in the cafeteria for us to get updates.

In the days after I remember the deafening silence of the airspace overhead.  Nothing flying into or out of Manchester or Nashua airports.  You never realize how many planes, and helicopters you hear as ambient noise until they are not there.  My heart went out the families of the flights, the trade center employees, and the people who fought back in the skies over Pennsylvania.

Today my life is ever different even though I did not loose anyone in that horrible mess.  However, 10 years later I do travel more than ever.  I drive and I fly regularly.  Every time I go through security I am watchful around me.  I do not argue with TSA because they hold up the lines.  From my standpoint they are the only thing between life and death.  hey have a job to do, and that is to try and keep us safe.  I personally vowed in the years since September 11, 2001 that I would always fight back like the folks over Pennsylvania.  I would never allow someone to do that without a fight as well.  I don’t know anyone today that cannot say the same thing in fact.

I have been to New York multiple times since the events of 10 years ago and only visited ground zero once.  It was all I needed actually.  I stood in silence, I cried and I watched as “10 House” rolled into their station just outside the site.  I learned that Engine company stood throughout all the chaos.  I just stood there and stared in the garage bay and cried not only for the firefighter, but for the other nearly 3000 people.

I do no think any of us American or otherwise can say are lives had not been touched or changed by the events of that fateful day.  I hope you all take a moment to just never forget what happened, and what was lost that morning in September.  I know I never will, and my thoughts and prayers go out to those families that lost loved ones in those attacks.  Also I’d like to say thank you for those who serve this great country in the theaters or battle to keep us safe.  God Speed to them and to all who protect this land of the free and home of the brave.

About Chris Colotti

Chris is active on the VMUG and event speaking circuit and is available for many events if you want to reach out and ask. Previously to this he spent close to a decade working for VMware as a Principal Architect. Previous to his nine plus years at VMware, Chris was a System Administrator that evolved his career into a data center architect. Chris spends a lot of time mentoring co-workers and friends on the benefits of personal growth and professional development. Chris is also amongst the first VMware Certified Design Experts (VCDX#37), and author of multiple white papers. In his spare time he helps his wife Julie run her promotional products as the accountant, book keeper, and IT Support. Chris also believes in both a healthy body and healthy mind, and has become heavily involved with fitness as a Diamond Team Beachbody Coach using P90X and other Beachbody Programs. Although Technology is his day job, Chris is passionate about fitness after losing 60 pounds himself in the last few years.

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