Friday, September 11, 2015

What to Do on September 11

I woke up, wondering what to do for September 11, National Day of Remembrance. I knew I didn't want to post pictures of 9/11--those of us who were there won't need pictures to remind us of the shock and despair we felt when we first saw the televised images. Every September since, I get the same lump in my throat. I can't forget my husband almost falling down the stairs to get to me. He had the radio on in the bathroom and staring at me wild-eyed he said, "OMG. OMG. OMG. Turn on the television!" I had no idea what I was about to see, but in an instant all the images were there. So surreal, but finally, I had to believe they were true. I fell to my knees, hands over my face.

We know we won't ever forget, but we can remember to honor. My friend Melisa Wells wrote of starting a tradition for 9/11 that my family and I will be taking part in from now on. What Melisa does is to research and post a few of the names of the loved ones lost in 9/11--we learn who they are, who they were to someone.

Each September 11, we can say their name and honor their life.

From Melisa:
"If you would like to do some learning and remembering today, here’s how. All you have to do is go to the September 11 Memorial website’s Memorial Guide and scroll down a little bit. On the bottom left of the screen you can click on North Pool or South Pool for a name listing. After that, pick a couple out and Google them. That’s it. It’s such a small task but so important, and the families appreciate any interest in their lost loved ones. THIS is something anyone can do ."

 You can read more of Melisa's Day of Remembrance post  here.


Today, my children and I learned of, and spoke the name Sophia B. Addo

Sophia B. Addo

Luck, Then Hard Work

 Luck, in the form of an immigration lottery, brought Sophia B. Addo to the United States from Ghana in 1996: a teacher of schoolchildren in Africa, she decided to take a chance and come to New York to further her own education. But getting into school here was not as uncomplicated as winning a lottery. She had her working papers, and landed a succession of housekeeping jobs while she improved her English. Already having passed an oral exam, she was due to take a written test on Sept. 12 to see if she was entitled to a G.E.D. certificate and college eligibility.

"She wanted to learn how to pronounce the language so she could express herself better in interviews," said her husband of 15 months, Joseph Ameyaw. Ms. Addo's aim was a career in teaching or nursing. In the interim, the 36-year-old tidied Windows on the World, commuting from their Bronx apartment. "She liked to read her Bible; she was a person who would comfort you, and when you were unhappy with life, she would use the word of God to make you happy," said Joseph. "To me, she was justice."

Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 4, 2001.

Sophia B. Addo

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  1. I'm late to your page and reading, but I love this idea of finding someone lost on 9/11 and remembering them. I had no idea this was available. Thank you for showing me.

    1. Isn't it a wonderful act, Tess? We did it together over here and we will do it every year from now on.



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