Remembering 9/11

A minute of silence for the victims and the heroes

Updated Sept. 11, 2022

On this rainy late Sunday afternoon, I reflect back on that dreadful day 21 years ago. I have just unpacked from a trip Up North for the wedding of Anthony and Tori trying to gather my thoughts after an emotional week.

September 11, 2001

It was a Tuesday morning and the week was young waiting to be filled with reporting of the unknown news in the small community of Ionia. Nothing out of the ordinary; a few township and school board meetings and some nice human interest stories with heartwarming pictures of kids back in school.

That perspective changed in a few minutes.

As I was listening to the finance committee reports by the Ionia County treasurer Nancy, little did I know that ominous day will fill the newscasts around the world for years to come.

I looked up from my notes and saw the county administrator’s face twist in a grimace of total disbelief and dismay as he watched in shock the attacks on the towers on his laptop. He shared the news with us and dissolved the meeting.

Disbelief ensued and we left the meeting to watch the attacks at our office of the Ionia Sentinel-Standard in Ionia with my colleagues, editor Val Gaus, reporters Brandon Lacic and Katelyn.

I remember the immense silence after the airplanes were grounded for four days. I also remember a story we did about a preaching pastor, that we got into trouble for doing it.

“He was preaching,” said publisher Val Rose.

The newspaper headlines varied: “A day of infamy.” For some reason, I remember that one the most. Then my dad came over in the evening to consult the situation, while mom was in the Czech Republic and thought it was a horror movie on TV.

The patriotism that followed was amazing, as well as the camaraderie of the people. I hope the memories will never fade away for the sake of the people who died during the catastrophe.

Right now, I am still at a loss for words. I always hold a minute of silence for all the victims.

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