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Did I tell you that I love you?

One thing about being a parent is that it is probably one of the most universal experiences to relate to people around you.  Complete strangers in the street.  Writers speaking through printed words.  Bloggers on the interweb.  Folks you see on the news.

Everybody is somebody else’s child.

This is sappy.  I know.

Today is 9-11.

I watched the taped replay of the first plane on the news in a hotel in Boise 8 years ago.   With utter disbelief, while I was calling my husband to wake him up, “Go turn on the TV, now!” I watched the second plane fly into view of the news video camera…

Every year, on this day, we heard the stories from parents who lost their children on that day, and I couldn’t stop crying the entire day.  I would pull myself together.  And then the thought “what would I do if it happened to my children?” would trigger another fit.  I don’t presume that I understand the heartaches these parents go through every moment.  Judging by the pain in my chest as I type this, I don’t think I will ever be able to imagine the intensity of it.

I left the house at 7:44 this morning.  That was 2 minutes before it was 8:46 am on the East Coast…

NPR played the interview of a fire fighter who lost both of his sons on 9-11-2001.  I steeled myself against the impact.

Mr. John Vigiano Sr. is a retired firefighter.  One of his boys was a policeman, and the other, a firefighter.  When John became a firefight, he received his grandfather’s badge number, 3436.

“We had the boys for — John for 36 years, Joe for 34 years, ironically. Badge number 3436.”

This was when my tears started and they have not been completely stopped yet.  I had to pull my car off to the side of the road after what Mr. Vigiano said about their unimaginable loss:

“I don’t have any could’ve, should’ve or would’ves.  I wouldn’t have changed anything.  It’s not many people that the last words they said to their son or daughter was ‘I love you.'”

Again.  I know this is probably unbearably sappy.  But, please, remember to tell your children you love them every time you say good-bye to them.


You can read the NPR Story here.

Or listen to the StoryCorps recording: Firefighter Father Recalls Losing Sons On 9/11

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