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Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow LA GRANDE REMEMBERS


PAYING TRIBUTE: Law enforcement officers from several agencies joined ranks with firefighters, military and forestry personnel at a ceremony of remembrance... (Observer photos/PHIL BULLOCK).
PAYING TRIBUTE: Law enforcement officers from several agencies joined ranks with firefighters, military and forestry personnel at a ceremony of remembrance... (Observer photos/PHIL BULLOCK).

Time of awareness

When thinking back to Sept. 11, I took time to reflect on:

The first moment when I saw one of the planes hit one of the towers. Then giving my mom a shocked look as the towers collapsed just before I headed out the door to school.

The moment the numbing shock faded into streams of tears on a young, freckled face. Tears that burned of anger, sorrow and helplessness.

The moment when I sat amazed watching both Democratic and Republican members of Congress gather together to sing on the steps of our country's capital.

The moment when for the first time I stood and pledged my allegiance to the flag with sincere pride and patriotism.

The moment when sitting in my home and watching my family showed me that I loved them so much it hurt. Even so that I felt a pang in my heart.

The moment I no longer took the warm embrace of an endearing friend for


The moment when I found myself smiling at a stranger because it could be the last smile they ever saw.

The moment I took to recall the many simple moments that followed many less simple moments that changed my life


The moment I came to realize the importance of hugs, smiles, and loving words. For we never know when we won't have another moment.

Alexa Leavitt

La Grande

Wake-up call

Sept. 11 last year was a wake-up call for me. I was en-route from Alaska to the lower 48 via the Alaska Highway.

The news that the borders entering the U.S. were being closed felt scary to me and I felt empathy for the refugees around the globe who are currently locked out of there homelands.

That experience has caused me to seek information that will answer the question, Why do people in other parts of the world hate the U.S. so much and what can be done to change that?

Marian Goldberg

La Grande

Better understanding

Sept. 11 helped me understand, with increased awareness, how amazingly fortunate I am to have been born in this country. It helped me understand a fraction of the vulnerability people in other countries feel, some for all their lives.

Sept. 11 helped me understand why other countries have contempt for us and would be willing to do us such devastating harm. As long as 20 percent of the world's population continues to use 80 percent of the world resources there will be


Sept. 11 helped me understand how little I truly do know about people in other countries and what their struggles are.

Sept. 11 helped me understand that we cannot begin to heal and move toward peace by retaliating and furthering the world's contempt for ourselves. Instead we can conserve and share. Neither assures safety, but the first assures that we will always be a target and the second gives us an opportunity to change the way we are viewed and the way we view


Understanding each other is the first step toward healing.

Erin Wolford

La Grande

Numbers tell story

I have read many reasons for the Sept. 11 debacle. Many of them have a bit of truth to them. I would like to offer a reason that I feel has much merit.

Ten years ago there were 2 billion people in the world who lived in poverty. Now there are 3 billion. Ten years ago there were 1 billion people in the world who lacked safe drinking water. Now there are 1.2 billion. Ten years ago there were 4.7 billion acres of tropical forests. Now there are 4.3 billion. Ten years ago there were 5.9 billion tons of carbon emitted into the air that you and I breathe. Now it is 6.3 billion tons.

What have we, the world's richest nation by far, done in the last 10 years to change the above proportions? Are we even aware of these changes in our


Many people around the world in every country know what we have, thanks to our wonderful communications. I wouldn't change the freedom of our communications, only some of what they tell. I would change, if I could, some of what our culture does.

Voltaire said, "It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong."

Bill Oberteuffer

Island City

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