Ten years ago the unthinkable happened. The U.S. was attacked by terrorists and nearly 3,000 citizens lost their lives. The world was changed forever. Today, Americans solemnly look back at the tragedy and pay tribute to the memories and spirits of those who perished so senselessly.
With images of planes crashing into New York's World Trade Center, the Pentagon outside of Washington, D.C. and a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, television left perpetual imprints of the Al Qaeda-conceived and executed-destruction on the mind's eye of viewers in the U.S. and around the globe.
A full decade of remembering that fateful day is now upon us, triggering reflections and impressions -- both old and new -- of the tragedy and its victims, their families, the horror and the heroes.
Today, news organizations, stations and networks are chronicling family members reading the names of the victims, the ceremonies, the passages and speeches from politicians, plus the stories about first-responders, survivors and loved ones lost.
Sunday's programming will culminate nearly three weeks and upward of 30 specials on cable, all focusing on some aspects of the attacks and their aftermath, trying to lend some perspective to the heinous acts. No doubt mournful emotions already have or will resurface again, evoking anger, pain, sorrow, grief and tears.
Hopefully, this day will bring some measures of solace, peace and closure as well. And despite the loss of innocence and American power, perhaps some beacons of optimism will shine through the lenses of the more cautious world we must live in today and tomorrow.
As our lives go on, this is truly a day we can never forget.