Background. On 9/10/02 I got a call from my agency’s Deputy Commissioner in charge of the hundred or so peeps downstairs and across the way on the same floor as my little hearings office. Bill was out of town but wanted to make sure that his peeps knew it was ok to take time away from work to honor the anniversary of 9/11, something which the Governor already had approved. So I kind of went overboard and broadcast the following email to our building.
Later, Bill good-naturedly gave me a little hell about it but not much since I didn’t answer to him and my message to the building came from the heart.
Given oitsubob’s thread yesterday and current times and circumstances, I was curious to see my feelings and writing 17 years ago so I dug this up. It’s a little embarrassing, but I believe a good snapshot of where we were then and maybe where we should be now. So here it is verbatim from 2002:On behalf of Governor Schweiker, Commissioner Koken, Bill Taylor and myself, all Department and Liquidator employees in the Capitol Associates Building are invited to pause at what they are doing and to share a time of reflection at 8:46 a.m. tomorrow, one year after first impact.
Those at work in their normal duties tomorrow are testimony to this country’s strength and to the resolve of its citizens. Those spending time with their families, attending services or otherwise recognizing the anniversary are testament that we cannot and will not forget the profound events which so changed our nation a year ago.
Among the changes, let us hold tight to our increased pride in our country, increased pride in our fellow citizens, and the bonds we all now share. In Andy Rooney’s recent words: “The good thing about what happened Sept. 11 is, it didn’t happen to just New York and Washington, it happened to our country - all of us. Americans feel closer together than they did before that terrible day.”
Although we may feel closer together, whether and how each of us chooses to remember remains deeply personal. Thus, at 8:46 tomorrow, you may join your fellow employees in reflection, meditation, or prayer. You may chose to think about your country, your family, the heroes, the survivors or the lost. You may keep your thoughts private or share them with your colleagues. You may choose just to keep working to serve our customers the best that you can.
Whatever you choose to think or do at 8:46, know that you are not alone. Whatever you choose, let us be proud of each other and proud of a country that allows us the choice. Whatever you choose, remember that we work together and laugh together, and that together we will keep this Commonwealth and nation great.
Yeah maybe that was a little overboard.
But we gathered at 8:46 the next day in our hearing room and by consensus joined in personal private prayers followed by a group pledge to the flag. Then we went back to work.
No real point to this, other than suggesting that we can and will work together to solve our country's and world's problems and remembering when we felt that way. I'm not sure how many of us feel that way nowadays. But we can and we will. In the meanwhile, prayers to the Carolinas.