Tuesday, May 3, 2011

This isn't a normal post for me, but in light of recent events, I felt it was the right thing to do.

"Daddy, we'll have to be strong for each other."  --Alex Bradshaw

I will always remember that day in September.  It started like any other fall day.   The sky was blue, the air was clear.  The leaves were barely beginning to turn.

It was Tuesday which meant that I volunteered in my oldest son's art class while my younger son, Parker stayed at home with Mr.  As I was about to leave the school office, it became clear to me that something horrible had happened.  As soon as I got into the car I turned on the radio only to hear that a plane had flown into a building in NY.  Once I arrived at home, Mr. and I watched the television as the second plane flew into a building.  We continued to watch in shock as our toddler sat at our feet playing with legos.  I kept looking at him wondering what kind of world our boys would grow up in.  My heart ached.

That night as I crawled into bed, I turned the TV on for one last update.  It was then when I realized Sandy Bradshaw, mother to Alex - a little girl in Parker's preschool class - had died on Flight 93.  Sandy was a flight attendant who flew only once a month. Like many others on this flight, she wasn't originally scheduled to be there.  My heart ached even more. 

When I learned of the recent events, it brought back all of those emotions again.  I imagine those who lost loved ones feel this pain every day ~ while it does get easier in time, the hurt never goes away completely.  "Never forget", I remind myself.

Thank you to the Navy Seals and all men and women in the armed forces who put themselves in harm's way so that our lives might be better.  Hopefully this will bring comfort and closure to the families who lost loved ones.  As Mother's Day approaches, my heart goes out to the mothers who lost children and to the children who lost mothers on that September day - a pain that I cannot imagine.

Parker (now 12 years old) said that I could share this poem he wrote in school last semester.  His words seem to say it all.


The sweat, the blood,
a band of brotherhood
The fighting, the tears
The death and loud cheers
To work, to train
To suffer endless pain
The families at home
Make you feel alone

The fight, the win,
To kill may be a sin
To kill the bad, 
May still make you sad
The effort, the sweat,
And not much that you get
Except for the thought
For our country you fought.

For the people who serve
Who have real nerve,
This is for you
And all that you do
And you haven't a clue
Of how much we love you.


  1. What a nice tribute and great poem he wrote.

  2. Such a sweet post, Rene. Thanks for taking the time to write it.

  3. thank you so much for sharing the poem and your story. we must never forget. when i woke up to go to work yesterday and was watching the 5 am news before heading out the door and i heard about bin laden, in a dark room by myself i smiled a huge smile. and i felt a huge swell of pride in my chest for those americans who got him. i just pray that with his death and his son's death, so his legacy and beliefs are put to rest as well.

  4. Thank you for this touching post. Parker, in his young wisdom, put into words what some of us have struggled to do.

  5. Beautiful tribute and poem. Prayers for Parker and his family.

  6. That is so touching - thank you for sharing with us.


  7. Well said, Parker! Thank you for sharing your story, Rene.

  8. Thank you for taking the time to write this and share it with us, Rene. It is important to remember the individuals and the lasting effect their loss has had on families across this country.

  9. Thanks you so much for sharing, I too have been on a roller coaster of emotions for the past two days.. I will never forget that day It was my 40th birthday.. the whole day was a black blur... and aways will be ... I do not celebrate my birthday at all... In memory of all the beautiful people that lost their lives that day.. it the least I can do... May we all pray for a better tomorrow.... And never forget how lucky we are.


  10. Such a beautiful tribute, Rene.
    I also remember that horrid day when the planes flew into the building as everyone watched.
    Life will never be the same again.

  11. A lovely tribute. We should never forget the individual losses of that horrible day.

  12. What a beautiful tribute. What a sweet gift to their family. Bless you.

  13. Hi Renee-

    A very touching and important post. We shall not forget those that lost their lives that day. I know I never will. The poem say it all. God bless all who lost ones they loved on that awful September day.

    My best- Diane

  14. Such a wonderful tribute to those who lost their lives...and to those who gave their lives on 9/11. With the recent events this week, I can only pray that there shall finally be Peace On Earth.

  15. Rene',
    Thank you for sharing such a wonderful statement of love, pride and admiration.
    {with /love}

  16. Beautiful post my dear! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts :)

  17. Rene, you and your husband should be so proud, what a wonderful young patriot Parker is. My prayers go out to all the those who lost loved ones on that sad day.

  18. What a wonderful job Rene. Parker's poem was so very touching.

  19. What a beautiful poem! My brother did a tour last year. We'll never be able to repay them for all that they do.

  20. I am so busy tonight that I almost didn't take the time to read this but I am so glad I did.
    A moving poem and a story that brought me to tears. To lose a child would be the worst thing I can imagine but to leave a child behind has always been my other greatest fear.
    God bless.

  21. What a beautiful poem, from such a thoughtful, sensitive boy. You have clearly done a great job raising him, Rene. Thanks for writing this today.

  22. Rene this is just a beautiful poem, I am so glad that he let you share it with us. Bless all the men and women.

  23. I enjoy your blog and was so happy to see that you posted this tribute.
    What a beautiful poem. Thank you for sharing.

  24. Oh my Rene, your son's poem brought tears to my eyes! What a beautiful and heartfelt poem!! My children's school called me the morning of 9/11 to ask me if I knew what was going on because of my husband's job. I hadn't even turned on the TV that day and like everyone else I stood in shock and horror as I watched the events unfold. Many of our friends were affected personally by the tragedy and senseless acts of a few evil people. My husband spent the hours and days following 9/11 at the pentagon under tight security as he investigated the scene so it was a very personal thing for us as well. Thank you for this lovely tribute to both the men and women who fight to keep us safe, and to those who gave their all by just doing their jobs on that fateful day.


  25. Rene, this post really hit home. You are so thoughtful to take the time to write about it. Your son's poem is beautiful; I emailed to my brother who is in special ops and has served 2 tours in Iraq and 1 in Afghanastan. Having experienced 9/11 at the WTC, your post gave me chills. I feel for Alex and his family. Thank you for sharing.

  26. You're so sweet to share this! My heart breaks for Alex and his family! And as a proud military wife, your post and your son's poem touched my heart. xoxo

  27. Wow! What a beautiful poem. You have got yourself one talented and very thoughtful little boy! Better than some of the most famous poems I've read! That needs to be published somewhere. It does say it all and it says it so well. I hope you enjoy a wonderful Mother's Day! I enjoy reading your blog.


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