In homage to my dear friend, Lucy Fishman 9/11/01

Written in 2012:

On 9-11, I was supposed to interview in a company in the WTC. It was a loosey-goosey kind of affair since I knew the principals involved. Instead, it being a beautiful day, I stayed upstate and drove to the hardware store where I heard the news.

My best friend, Lucy Fishman was murdered that day. Lucy committed the cardinal sin of leading a normal life. Instead of bringing her baby son, J J, to day care, her husband took over so she could get to work bright and early at 1 WTC. Her murder (and I insist on that word because it was murder for all intents and purposes) also left her daughter, Samantha bereft of a loving mother.

A month after 9-11, I stayed at a hotel in Burlington, Vermont. My mother was in a hospice nearby and I spent all my savings on hotel bills to be close to her. I entered the elevator to go to the Lobby which immediately filled with gleeful people, laughing and joking around. One guy turned to me and asked, "Why are you so glum?"

"Glum?" I responded. "Well, let's see... the largest tragedy just took place..."

"What tragedy is that?" asked one of the merry-makers.

Stupefied, I cried out, "Nine One One!"

The elevator doors opened to the Lobby where we exited the cab. The group circled around me. "Oh, that doesn't affect us! We're from Lake Champlain. That's a New York City issue."

My jaw hit the ground. Over 3,000 people murdered in three locations and that's a New York City issue? They couldn't give a shit to what I had to say and gaily went on their way.

It's going on eleven years and I still mourn with the same depth and grief as if it occurred yesterday. Not only for Lucy, but all the people who were murdered, for all the volunteers who died or suffer bad health from being of selfless service, for all the families bereft of their loved ones.

Out of that tragedy emerged for a limited amount of time a national bonding (excluding the inhabitants of Lake Champlain) where differences were swept aside for the greater good.

This is a good country and Americans are a great people. The bitter divisiveness over the past several years has made us unrecognizable to each other. At least, in mourning the victims, we have found a unity, unfortunately steeped in tragedy.

God bless you, Lucy Fishman. You're always in my heart. I will always miss you.

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