Twelve Years and Two Days Ago

The Moving Wall in Florence (9/9/2001)

Photo: Julia Ozab

On Sunday, September 9, 2001, Julia and I visited the portable Vietnam Veterans Memorial (“The Moving Wall“) during a stop over in Florence, Oregon. I’ve never been to the permanent memorial in Washington D.C.—it was built three years after my family moved to California—so this was the closest I would get unless I ever made it back east again.

Under normal circumstances, this would have been a memorable visit. But that week was anything but normal. Two days later, almost 3,000 innocent people would lose their lives on a day none of us will ever forget.

And in my memory, these two events that came two days apart by coincidence will be forever linked in my memory. I pray every year at this time for the families that lost loved ones on 9/11, and I also pray for those who lost loved ones serving in Vietnam, in Afghanistan, and in Iraq.

Some September, I hope to make it back east again. To visit the Vietnam War Memorial and also to visit the September 11 Memorial. To return to the place where the towers once stood, and to pray for peace.

The North Tower Fountain (9/17/2011)

Photo: Kai Brinker (CC BY-SA 2.0)


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