Zachary, 10 years later

A 9/11 reflection

We were getting ready for church. I was shaving.

“Zachary,” I said, “They are probably going to be talking about 9/11 today at church.”

“So is this a national holiday?”

“No, I wouldn’t say ‘holiday.’ It is a day of reflection.”

Lucas asked, “What does ‘reflection’ mean?”

I answered, “Reflection means ‘thinking about.’ People will be thinking about what they were doing 10 years ago today. I didn’t come home to your mother 10 years ago. I was in New Jersey and I couldn’t get back into Manhattan.”

“Why?” Zach asked.

“Because they shut all the bridges and tunnels.”


“Because they were afraid something else bad was going to happen.”

I continued, “I remember when I finally got home the next day. Momma was pregnant with you and I remember thinking, ‘What kind of world are we bringing Zachary into?'”

“One that I could make better,” he said without a pause.




  1. joe , thanks for your sharing your conversation . i didn’t realize you were not in the office that day … i was at the gnw office with the crew … the images don’t change all that much, simply the perspective has become one of ongoing reflection … we all have responsibilities “to make it better.” i trust all is well .. in peace, joe

  2. Thanks for stopping by, Joe. What could you see from the gNw offices? What was the scene like at the Grace Building?

  3. Wow.

  4. Zachary is a sensitive and most extraordinary boy.

  5. I’m sure he will, too.

  6. xo

  7. Ana Mantini says:

    amazing.. beautiful…
    Like you and your wife, I had just found out i was pregnant with my Luke when this all happened. To think we were bringing a child into a world like this… but Zachary gives me hope!

  8. What a lovely thought to share, Ana. Thank you!

  9. I am convinced that God speaks to us through children.

  10. Now, are we paying any attention? That’s the question.

  11. Yes, we are paying attention!

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