The image of two furiously burning towers stayed prominently on the AOL home page while I checked my email before heading to work.
At the time, I was living in West Lafayette, Indiana, looking after my folks in their beautiful rural home. It didn’t sink in until I saw the same thing on the TV as I headed out the door. By the time I arrived at the office in Purdue’s Research Park, the whole world was in shock. Voices were hushed. Every TV and computer screen showed variations of the same thing. I remember that after an hour or so of numbly staring at each other, we closed up and went home.
Pulling into the long, curving driveway, I met a sight that brought it all sharply home. Dad, a veteran partially paralyzed from a recent stroke, had laboriously made his way out to the flagpole by the giant sycamore…and was raising the American flag to half-mast.