On Sept. 11, 2001, despair struck the U.S. in a tragic event we all remember as 9/11. However, people from older generations such as baby boomers have memories much different than that of those in the younger, millennial generation.
An Older Perspective
Dr. Steven Lemley, a communication theory professor at LCU, shared his experience with 9/11.
“It was a day that I will never forget. I was downstairs in our two-story house, and I had the television on. Suddenly the news broke out with a photo of the towers and of course they were saying the trade center had just gotten struck by a plane,” he said.
“I called each of my grown children, just to try and give some reassurance, if needed. I also called my 91-year-old mother who was confused about the whole thing. It was a time that left U.S. citizens with a feeling of great uncertainty.”
At the time, Dr. Lemley was teaching at Pepperdine University. He said his students were very upset.
“We discussed the situation and then I led them in a prayer. Some students expressed great appreciation towards that and said they felt more at peace,” Dr. Lemley said.
A Younger Perspective
Caleb Scoggins, a junior fine arts major from Whiteface, Texas, was only a child when 9/11 took place.
“I just remember my dad coming home and saying something bad had happened. That just meant we were out of milk as far as I was concerned.”
This is not an unusual perspective for someone his age – those who were not old enough to walk or talk at the time of 9/11 could not possibly have felt the way someone older did, much less someone who was there or lost a family member in the tragedy.
Caleb concludes: “Now that I am older, I definitely see it from a different perspective. People lost their lives and that’s a sad thing. But it will never have as much effect on me as, maybe, the attack on Pearl Harbor affected my grandparents.”
In the grand scheme of things, nobody but the people directly involved will ever understand the full sorrow and distress caused by this unfortunate event. However, as U.S. citizens, we must strive to be there for one another in times of despair.
How you can honor your nation on 9/11 and every day
When the news hit campus on Sept. 11, 2001, the LCU community gathered in the Moody Auditorium, watching network television coverage on the big screens. As recorded in LCU’s 60thanniversary history book, after seeing the twin towers collapse, everyone took to their knees in prayer.
“I still remember the comfort and calm that came from that prayer time,” wrote Ken Jones, LCU president at the time.
In the same way, we each can take part in a prayer or moment of silence for first-responders, for those who waited for a loved one that would never return home and to show gratitude that we are still alive today.