Nearly 20 years have passed since the attacks on September 11th, 2001. For any of us who lived through that day, we’ll think back on where we were, what we did, what we saw. The images I see are of an undergrad who lived right across from Memorial Stadium, going to class for a few minutes in the morning, then heading back home to spend the rest of the day watching the scenes playing over and over on television.
Many more images make up my memories on that day, and maybe I’ll write them all down some time. Another memory is from a few weeks later. I remember seeing that gigantic flag spreading across Owen Field. These days, it is pretty common to see flags stretched sideline to sideline during a pregame ceremony, but I don’t remember witnessing one, at least in person, before that day when football returned.
I’m not sure I recall feeling especially patriotic on that day, but I do remember being very happy that something I loved was back. Seeing pictures of that game always reminds me of the happiness I felt, or maybe it was a relief of the return of a just a little bit of normalcy. Even though everything had changed, some part of life had returned.
Many undergrads today weren’t born then. They have their memories being made of the events they are living through right now. I won’t make comparisons; it’s not right to do so. I just hope they feel some happiness when something they love returns, albeit in a form different from the last time they saw it.