My son Jack had just started kindergarten, and around noon, the teachers decided they had better tell the children what had happened. When Jack heard that planes had flown into the World Trade Center and knocked it down, he raised his hand and said that his mom worked across the street from there, and he thought she was probably not hurt but that they should make sure the towers hadn’t fallen on her building.
So he called me at home – I had never left for work that day – and I was able to tell him that I had talked to his mother, and she was just fine. I asked him if he wanted to come home, and he said, no, that wasn’t necessary, but he’d like to give me a hug. I ran the four blocks to the school and gave him the biggest hug I could possibly give. I asked again if he wanted to come home, and he said he might as well finish the school day.
September 11, 2011, was a horrible day, and it led, both directly and indirectly, to more horrible times for me personally and for this great nation of ours. I don’t like to think about that day at all. I think a five-year-old boy instinctively had the right response: check to see if everyone’s OK, give each other a big hug, and then go on. Because we had no choice except to go on.