Posted by Jim Lyons JD, CPC on Sep 08, 2022

I thank the Lord for the gift of my life and I pray for those lost in New York City, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania. I think of their families and hope the years have eased the pain of their loss. I think of the lingering health issues and the loss of life that still touches many survivors and first responders in NYC.

Over the years, and still today, I think about the two seemingly routine events that saved my own life: A subway delayed at 14th Street, and a request from my office to pick up doughnuts for the 10AM sales meeting. Both events resulting in me pushing the elevator button as the first plane hit WTC1. Were these delaying events part of the serendipity of life or the intercession of the Lord? I suspect I will ponder this question the rest of my life.

What is without question are the wonders in my life. In the eye of my mind and in that special place in my heart, I recall over these 21 years great family events — marriages, holidays, graduations, the birth of children and  grandchildren, the laughter of good friends, special moments. I can go on and on. But I also embrace the promise of the future as I watch my family grow.

In contrast, as I think about 9/11 and thank God for all I have received, I think of the individual and collective loss that befell so many individuals and families that day and the years that followed. Precious memories that should have been, but were tragically lost to the horrors of that day. 

My friends, we should never forget the tragedy of 9/11. More importantly, we must never forget the people we lost and what their families lost. Frequently, as fallible human beings we get preoccupied with the activities of life and we forget the important things such as faith, family and love. I believe, and I hope you believe, that those we lost that day still touch us with good and forgiving thoughts. They tell us in their own angelic way to set aside our differences, love more, hug more, be kind and gentle, show compassion and mercy. I believe in this life, in spite of our differences, there is much more that binds us than separates us as a People and a Nation. It is my hope and prayer on this 21th anniversary of 9/11, as we remember those we lost, that we always hold sacred and never take for granted the wonderful gift of life and the promise of the future.