September 11 – Remembered

By Sosamma Samuel-Burnett J.D.
Founder/President, G.L.O.B.A.L. Justice

On September 11, 2001, my husband, Zack, and I woke early morning in our Rocklin, CA home. Zack had just completed his training for the U2 program and was heading to work that morning at Beale Air Force Base. He happened to turn on the TV to watch the morning news as he zipped up his flight suit and filled his flight bag. I was upstairs when he called out for me — I looked over the banister of the loft to see him standing in the living room watching the TV screen as the jets crashed into the Twin Towers.

At first, we did not know what we were seeing so we stood unmoving trying to grasp the reality. When reality set in, Zack turned, grabbed his flight bag, looked up at me and said “I don’t think I will be home tonight.” As the door shut behind him, I realized that in some profound way, our country, our world, and our family had changed.

That moment began a series of remarkable events in the history of our country and in the life of my family. Zack went on to several overseas missions — taking him away from home for several months at a time and over 280 of the year. At one point, he was away for over 5 months with no contact of any kind with me for about 3 of those months. Security issues and concerns were at their height as the War on Terror ensued. But our family and our country were never more resolved and never more sure that this was a cause worth fighting.

Today, September 11, 2014, 13 years later, the war continues. President Obama addressed the nation last night providing a four-prong strategy of how to “degrade and defeat” ISIS — the current and brutal face of global terrorism. That is also a fight that may be necessary. But I hope and pray that the lives lost and the impact of that loss from September 11, 2001, remains in our minds and hearts as we continue to address the political and civil realities that comes with global terrorism.