Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Much More Than the Sum of Her Parts

Two Sundays ago, the Missus and I participated in the annual Tunnel to Towers 5K Run/Walk in New York City.  It is an incredible event - a labor of love bestowed upon all of us who take part in it, and all of those who are the recipients of the Siller Foundation's great works - by the family of FDNY Firefighter Stephen Siller, who was one of the 343 members of the FDNY who was murdered on September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center.  

FF Stephen Siller was only thirty-four years old when he was killed on that terrible Tuesday.  In addition to his older siblings (he was the youngest of the seven Siller Sibs), he left behind his wife Sally and the couple's five children:  Jake, Stephen, Katherine, Genevieve, and Olivia.  

Yesterday morning, I had the pleasure and the privilege of coming across an essay that Olivia Siller, a student at Manhattan College, wrote entitled "The Life of a 9/11 Kid".  It is, in my estimation, among the best pieces of writing I have ever read, not only on the subject of September 11, 2001 but, on the far more involved and complicated topics of mourning, grieving, and carrying on.  Far too many children - including those who knew nothing of each other's existence - simultaneously became conscripts in an army to which not a single one of them wanted to belong:  The Army of 9/11 Kids.  

She writes (speaking of the aforementioned "Army"), "We've never seen September 12th."  Invest the several minutes required to read her piece and to digest it.  When you do, be ever mindful of the presence of mind required to marry such words and such ideas and then, even if it for just a moment, remember that the one doing so is, herself, still just a young woman.  

An extraordinary young lady.  Simply extraordinary. 

-AK   

    

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