Monday, September 12, 2011

The Healing Field

As we all know, yesterday marked the 10th anniversary of the horrifying act of terrorism that happened in New York City, Washington D.C., and Pennsylvania. As a way of honoring the fallen souls from 10 years ago, West Michigan participated in a nation wide display called The Healing Field. There were eleven fields of American flags set up around the county, one flag for each person killed on September 11, 2001.
I'm not sure I can completely vocalize the feelings I had when first seeing the display. It was breath-taking, heart-breaking, and emotional. I think I actually had to catch my breath. To see so many flags, fluttering in the wind... I can't completely explain it.
We were told that during the ceremony to place the flags, two people read off the individuals names with a 4 second delay between names. In total, it took just over 4 hours to read off all of the names of people who perished September 11, 2001.
Jeremy and I wanted to make today a learning experience for the kids, but without too much information. Jeremy ended up explaining to Jayce that 10 years ago, something very bad happened and a lot of people died. He told our first born that each flag stood for a person who had died that day. My sweet heart of a son then asked if all of those people were in heaven.

Do you see that sign to the right of the picture? There were many "fact" signs around the hillside. That one there said this: "Fact: 2800 children lost a parent on that infamous morning".
Each of the flags stood for a person who died in the terror attack. Attached to the each of the flags was a card with a name, an age, where they died, and a short paragraph of information about them. The cards that had a blue ribbon were for law enforcement who died that day. The red ribbons were for firefighters. Personally, those with the red and blue ribbons were a little harder to see.

I'm glad that my children were able to experience this with us today. I can honestly say, being able to take part in such a humbling and honoring display was amazing.


Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing the story Melissa. What a tribute to all those who lost their lives and to the families.

Just like so many times in the history of our great country, "May we never forget".


Anonymous said...


megs said...

What a great way to honor and remember - and to take the boys to. Thanks for sharing it!