9/11: 15 Years Later

Today we remember the thousands of innocent lives lost on September 11, 2001, when a group of cowards hijacked four passenger airliners and perpetrated the worst terrorist attack in U.S. history. The four coordinated terrorist attacks killed 2,996 people and injured over 6,000 others, with civilians, firefighters, and law enforcement officers among them.

A few days ago, I came across a YouTube video that made me sick to my stomach. It contained audio of separate calls made to 911 by two people who died in the 9/11 attacks -- Kevin Cosgrove and Melissa Doi. You can sense the hopelessness in their voice as both distressed individuals exhort 911 dispatchers on the line to rescue them. Cosgrove states that he's "too young to die," and Doi seems resigned to her fate, somberly declaring, "I'm going to die." I can't imagine what they were feeling as the grim reality that they were in the final moments of their lives began to set in.

It's hard to believe that today marks the 15th anniversary of these horrific acts -- a day that would change America forever.

After watching that video, I felt two things: (1) A rush of patriotism at seeing how, 15 years later, The United States has emerged stronger and more resilient than ever amid global terrorism (2) Grateful for the chance to live another day and for all my blessings.

Piggybacking on a theme in several of my recent posts, we never know when our time will be up. That's why we should aim to live our lives to the max. That means never taking anything for granted, never holding back on achieving our goals, and never missing a chance to tell loved ones how much they mean to us.

Those who perished on September 11th will never be forgotten, including the men and women in uniform -- true heroes -- who gave their lives in the line of duty.

I am proud to be American, especially on this day.

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