My daughter, featured in the pictures below, wasn't even a sparkle in my eye on September 11, 2001. In fact, my husband and I weren't even married yet. She didn't get to experience 9/11 the way we did. It's not that I want to subject her to the heartache and fear the world experienced on that day. But it's only been 15 years and the world is still feeling the aftershock of those horrific events. My daughter has questions. She wants to understand.
How in the world can I explain that day to her? How can I explain the incredible feeling of loss and devastation? How can I show her the unity that encompassed our nation in the months and years that followed that horrific day? How can I show her God's love in the midst of such evil and darkness?
My answer in short; photographs.
There is great power in photography. We, as photographers, have the best super power of all...to freeze time. I'll never forget the feeling I had watching the second plane hit the second tower. I'll never forget the nausea that swept over me as I watched the towers plummet to the ground. I'll never forget the tears I cried for the 2,996 lives lost that day. Those memories are tucked away in my heart, always. But the photographs and videos that surface this time of year always take me right back to September 11, 2001. I can remember where I was, what I was doing, what I was listening to, the smells in the air, the feeling in my gut...
I know they are hard to look at, the photographs. But I feel like it's so important to revisit that day every year. To honor the fallen that we told we would never forget. And for my daughter, those photographs are the only thing she has to connect her to that day. Those photographs answer questions. Those photographs invoke emotion. Those photographs freeze time. Those photographs document history.
Never underestimate the power of an image. Check out the links below to see what I mean.