Amidst the tragedy of 9/11, nearly 3,000 individuals lost their lives and over 6,000 people were injured. The horrific numbers do not even begin to touch the countless individuals that received broken hearts from the loss of loved ones during that tragic terrorist attack. Many of those that were hurt the most, with the pain still lingering today, are the children of the victims of 9/11.
The children of 9/11 ranged from newborns to their late teens. Some were not even born. Yet, the pain of losing someone that they loved unconditionally, that lost their life in the largest terrorist attack on American soil, lingers on and may never fully heal.
Now, 15 years later, the children of 9/11 are grown up and ready to tell their stories and remember the parents and loves ones they lost during the attack on the Twin Towers.
Metro shared the experiences of seven children of 9/11, each from different backgrounds and each celebrating the lives of their lost parents in different ways. The two things they have in common are the tragic loss of a loved one and that 9/11 is a day that they will never forget.
Thea Trinidad was only ten years old when she heard her father say his final goodbye. As a child she remembers his love for wrestling and how being a tomboy coerced her to share that love. In honor of her father, she forged a career in wrestling and was named as the 2011 Inspirational Wrestler of the year by Pro Wrestling Illustrated.
Anjunelly Jean-Pierre was 19 when her mother lost her life in the World Trade Center Attack. Her mother was the manager of an executive cafe and Anjunelly chose to remember and celebrate her mother by taking on a similar task in life. Now 34, Anjunelly told the AP that she manages the Members’ Dining Room in Congress, hoping to bring people together over food just as her mother did.
Ryan McGowan was only 5 when his mother lost her life in the World Trade Center attack. In remembrance of his mother, he had the roman numerals ‘IX XI” tattooed on the back of his neck. When people see the tattoo and ask about its significance, he is forced to talk about how the terrorist attack impacted his life. It has become a form of therapy for him.
Ronald Milam Jr. was born after the 9/11 attack. Although he has no memories of that day, he chose to play his father’s favorite sport in school; basketball. In remembrance of his father, he proudly sports the number 33, the age his father was when he died at the Pentagon on 9/11
These are just a few samples of the children that lost loved ones during 9/11. Each remembers the event in a different way and each pays tribute to a loved one in their own unique manner.
— CNN (@CNN) September 9, 2016
In total, 3,051 children under the age of 18 lost parents during the 9/11 attacks, according to the LA Times. Each shares a horrific connection that no one wishes to be part of.
The children of 9/11 share a unique connection that bonds them together and allows them a unique opportunity to share their experiences with others that might experience similar losses.
During the attacks on Paris earlier this year, some of the children of 9/11 chose to reach out to the people of Paris to share their empathy.
— Amanda Lance (@dal4kids) September 11, 2016
The Children of 9/11 understand how terrorist attacks can impact the lives of those that have a connection to the victims. When Paris was under attack earlier this year, a group of the 9/11 children came together to share their experiences with the residents of Paris and reassure them that they are not alone and that we, as Americans, care for them deeply and will do what it takes to assist them during the tough time.
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