LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
Mesmerized at the surreal events that brought the world to a halt, reality jolted like lightning as the horror unfolded before our eyes, and the vigil to rise from the ashes began. Hours and days turned into months, as the losses continued to rise and the effects of a senseless slaughter horrified the world.
Through the ashes and the tears, the prayers and the discoveries, came recovery and strength, shining as bright as the torch above the historic statue that watched over the tragedy.
September 11, 2013
A slight breeze whirled the American flags that adorned the homes and businesses of rural and urban America as the memories of a fateful day in world history dawned. As the sun set behind the horizon, a family gathered together with a dying loved one whose condition had worsened. Panic and emotion overcame logic and the family reached out for help. The successive flow of headlights approaching the residence reflected against the dark of the night as loved ones dreading the inevitable gathered in fear and apprehension. Throughout the night, the vigil continued as loved ones made a progression in and out of the residence, waiting and wondering.
Throughout the night, the steady stream of family members lent support to those who had witnessed the decline, as the near silent ticking of the clock toward midnight marked yet another day to remember. Through the semi-consciousness of the dying woman, the “Happy Birthday” wishes brought a smile to the wrinkled and pain-distraught face.
Reflections of her life, her caring and giving, were topics of discussion as other family members arrived to share in the final hours that would define their memories, not of the pain-wracked body that lied bedfast in a nearby room, but of brighter, happier and healthier days. Whispered prayers were for relief, for comfort, for this dying woman whose life was defined by her strength as that very characteristic slowly drained from her struggling body.