Never Forget -- Memories of my grandfather on his 9/11 birthday

I cried a lot yesterday.  The tenth anniversary of the September 11th attacks brought back all of the memories and emotions of that day.  Each time Taps played, I felt each note in my very core.  It’s amazing how music has that power to physically jar you more so than just words or images.  Along with the rest of the country, I spent yesterday remembering.  Along with the rest of my family, however, I remembered even more.

My late grandfather, Robert H. Brumell (for whom my son is named), was born on September 11th.  He passed away only five years ago, so his absence on his birthday brings memories of him rushing back for our family.  Mixing the emotions of personal loss with national grief made yesterday a long day.

My grandfather was a World War II veteran, as just about every man of his generation was.  It’s amazing how that one fact underlines the difference in a generation.  I know there was an initial rush of patriotism after September 11, 2001 that brought with it a surge of enlistments.  But it was short-lived and paled in comparison to the hordes of young men who signed up for military service after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

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