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Anniversary of 9/11 affirms faith in humanity

September 11th, 2013 Posted in Opinion

By Emily Pannell Johnson
Guest editorial

Time to get serious.

There were 2,977 individuals killed on September 11, 2001. That number includes 343 New York City firefighters, 23 New York City police officers and 37 Port Authority officers. That number also includes the 40 passengers and crew members aboard United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in a Pennsylvania field after those on board attempted to take back control of the flight deck. In the days and months and years after 9/11, thousands of volunteers stepped forward to cleanup and rebuild. Within 20 days after the attacks, blood donations nationwide went up by 86.2 percent.

I love America, but each year the anniversary of 9/11 doesn’t reaffirm my patriotism— it reaffirms my faith in humanity. As the towers burned and crumbled, brave individuals ran toward the buildings to save the people trapped inside. In the streets of New York, strangers carried each other to safety. The individuals aboard Flight 93 fought back at the expense of their own lives.

In the darkest moments of tragedy, it is the goodness of ordinary people that saves us all. More than anything else, that’s what I remember about September 11, 2001.

–Emily Pannell Johnson is a 2013 graduate of USU.


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