By Darryl Rhoades, contributor
9/11 will always be one of those “where were you” dates. Most everyone has a story or connection from that day. Mine wasn’t any deeper than most. I saw what was happening on TV as I was preparing to leave for Myrtle Beach to do a show and decided to call to see if the club would be open. The thought from the club-owner was that people could probably use a break from the news that day but it was my call. Since I agreed I kept packing and left while listening more than I could take all day on the radio. That night I advised the other two performers on the bill to keep away from the news topic but left it to them. Both thought it a good idea. At the end of my show I simply noted that today was painful for all of us and we hoped this show helped some get thru it even if only for a few minutes.
After the show several came up and shook all of our hands and thanked us and commented that they needed the distraction.
It was the many stories, and even more recent ones, coming from that day that have stayed with me.
(Cascade pools named Reflecting Absence by architect Michael Arad are located on the footprints of the original World Trade Center towers, June 2012.)
My wife was an international flight attendant for Delta getting ready to go on a trip that got cancelled. A flight attendant friend of hers was stranded on layover in Atlanta since the flights were all suspended so she stayed at our house for several days.
The people in Newfoundland, Canada opened up their houses to the many who were stranded coming back over the pond from Europe and unable to fly into the U.S.
The documentary about 9/11 and the firefighters narrated by Robert De Niro should be shown on this day every year along with the names of politicians who remained inactive when it came to funding the treatments from the illnesses those fire fighters incurred from that day.
I never fail to become emotional when they read the names of the victims and see the pain on the faces of friends and families because they are the living victims.
I will forever have disdain for those who made up stories to attack Muslims and further divide this country.
When I see a bumper sticker that reads “9/11 Never Forget,” I agree. I’ll never forget those who talked about supporting the firefighters and then did the opposite. I’ll never forget that a story was made up about hundreds (or was it thousands) of Muslims dancing in the streets of New Jersey to celebrate the towers falling. I’ll never forget that this event was used as a political maneuver supported by members from both the Republican and Democratic parties. Most of all I will always remember that innocent people from all different races and religions died that day, leaving behind many who will relive all of this for the rest of their lives.