On the fateful morning of September 11, 2001, our nation stood still as news came in of horrific attacks on American soil. Most all of us will never forget where we were that day when the world changed right before our eyes. Now, eighteen years later, we mark this spot in history each year by remembering the more than 3,000 Americans who lost their lives that day in New York, Washington, D.C., and Pennsylvania. We also prayerfully honor the families who lost loved ones and give thanks for the many heroes who emerged that day and, in the months, and years that followed.
September 11, 2001, changed our country forever, but in the nearly two decades since that day, Americans have understandably pressed on. We have gone about our daily lives, working hard to provide for our families. Certainly, doing anything less would be a victory for those who committed these atrocious acts against our freedom. But, as we continue to move forward, may we never take for granted the heroic acts of the thousands of Americans that sacrifice to keep us safe and ensure this type of attack never happens again.
Every day and every night, 365 days a year, there are men and women working to defend our country and everything it stands for. And, while each year, September 11th provides an important occasion for us to give thanks for our servicemembers, we should be mindful of their sacrifices every single day. Perhaps the best way for us to honor the men and women who wear the uniform is to simply never forget what they fight for.
Our servicemembers fight for the American ideals of freedom, liberty, and justice. Let us all use this occasion each year to reaffirm our steadfast commitment to these ideals and remember how truly blessed we are to live in the greatest country in the world. May we feel overwhelming gratitude for the members of our Armed Forces every day, keeping September 11th a solemn day to reflect upon how much has been sacrificed by so many.
Around this anniversary each year, it is important for us all to remember the heinous acts of hatred committed against us by those who oppose our liberty and freedom, the unspeakable suffering of those who lost people they love, the personal effect it has had on so many of us, and the brave men and women who continue to stand guard each day to keep us safe. May God bless each and every family that suffered loss during this time eighteen years ago. My prayers are with you, and your sacrifice has not been forgotten.
Martha Roby represents Alabama’s Second Congressional District. She lives in Montgomery, Alabama, with her husband Riley and their two children.