Sept. 11 changed America and the world

September 03, 2011|Jake Womer

There are a string of images that I never want to see again.

I don't know how many times I've seen video of the second plane flying into the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, 2001. Whatever the final tally, that's enough.

I was far from danger that day and glued to a television screen like so many other Americans. Video of the plane's impact and of the towers collapsing seemed to be played on a loop.

And now it's seared into my brain. I don't need to be reminded of it.

Many Americans share that sentiment. As one friend told me, "We lived it. Let's not relive it."

But after next Sunday, a decade will have passed. It's time to examine how the events of Sept. 11 and our response changed America and the world.

To that end, The Herald-Mail will publish a wide-ranging series of stories related to the 10th anniversary of 9/11.  

We write these stories not out of fascination with the morbid details of a national tragedy, but rather to remember those who died that day, to honor those who have given their lives since and to take the temperature of where we stand as a nation and a community 10 years after one of the worst days in American history.

In today's edition are the story of Marjorie Kane, who lost her father in the World Trade Center, and a complete list of the victims of all of the attacks.

It's worth everyone's time to pause long enough to take in the size of that list and remind themselves of the scope of the tragedy and how the heroes of the day prevented that list from being double or triple the size.

We remember how firefighters and police charged into danger and how the passengers of United Flight 93 learned of the earlier attacks and refused to be used as a weapon to kill their fellow man.

We remember those who have served in the military to protect us.

We remember our own anxieties and fears in the immediate aftermath and how we've progressed since then.

Are we safer today than we were then? What are the lasting effects on the economy? What have we learned? Where do we go from here?

Our coverage examines these questions and more, and will include images that we'd rather just forget, but we will remember.

Jake Womer is executive editor of The Herald-Mail. He can be reached by calling 301-791-7594 or by sending an email to

The Herald-Mail Articles