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Friday, September 11, 2009

The King , Remember September 11, 2001...and Never Forget !!

9-11-2009....another year has passed and I made my second walking trek to Ground Zero since the one I did last year. If you have not read that one, it is on the right hand side of the page 9/11 Tribute 2008. That was my first account of how I felt having worked at 4 World Trade Center 21 years ago, and visiting it for the first time since that tragic day.

I realized on this walk, the demons that are within us from that day will never die. They may stay dormant in a deep slumber...but I felt them awake as I walked through this valley of death.

Just like last year, I felt the same strong emotions of anger, frustration, confusion and grief. It was emotionally draining and reliving all the good times I had there, and seeing what is left without the progress I wish they would make rebuilding it, left me physically and spiritually drained when I went home that day.

The leading up to 9/11 has changed a bit from last year, and it seems that New York City has made the memorials to be held more exclusively on 9/11 rather than having other memorials days before. Last year they had the Flags of Heroes flying in Battery Park, along with an elaborate Firefighter tribute set up around the sphere.

This year, when I arrived to Battery Park, there were no flags flying, there was a Dutch festival going on across the street complete with windmill and wooden shoes galore, and a buzz of activity that I haven't seen or felt at this time of year in a very long time. I will post in the future of the Dutch festival, but this post will focus on just the walk I took and the pictures of what I looked at that day so you can get a sense of what progress or lack of is getting done. There are many photos so I will not do much commenting. It will take you a while to go through this post, maybe a couple of trips back.

I may write afterward, but so many thoughts running through my mind and its an upsetting feeling viewing all these pics...so for now I begin with a short video I found that someone made of Battery Park from when they did have the Flags of heroes waving and a more elaborate tribute set up for all the first responders. However for the most part, I'm going to keep with the silent theme.

Click on any picture to read the writing and see it better, If anyone wants the original file just email me, and consider it done.







This was the flag on the city bus window I took into the city.



The sphere with the eternal flame burning for all those innocent lives.


As I walked my old route towards where they are building The Freedom Tower, I noticed new items that are beginning to pop up all over the city like these art sculptures which look like twisted parking meters.

Also, new flower pots bringing color to my walk.

There were many servicemen walking around because a ship was in.



As I walked the route toward where my building used to be, I saw the first signs of a tribute.



I stepped out into the middle of the street hoping to see something...anything rising up into the sky....but I was looking into the same abyss that I saw last year. Nothing in place of what was evaporated by murderers.

I stepped back on the sidewalk and saw that the Firehouse that is directly across from The World Trade Center Complex has a wall memorial that is very impressive.


They are still doing work on the buildings which is why scaffolding is everywhere.





May we never forget ...indeed.

Dedicated To Those Who Fell And Those Who Carry On

Command Post





The Towers afire.





These are memorials to the brave firefighters who perished from this particular firehouse which is known as Ladder 10 and Engine 10.


As you can read it say 10 House...Still Standing !!!


Firefighters preparing for memorial services.


This famous picture painted on a piece of the rubble.

Relatives were coming in and out, and there were news people interviewing anyone who walked in or out of the firehouse.


What is supposed to be...what the future of downtown Manhattan will look like....Hopefully.


The future Police Memorial.


My first glimpse of progress !! A couple of floors built !

Looks like that will be the underground parking...or who knows, but its growing up.


and taking form.


How come Yankee Stadium was built with lightning speed and this is all the progress so far ??


as a Flag still shows our spirit.

As I was walking on one of the bridges around the pit, there was a no smoking sign.....How about a no F***ING TERRORISTS sign ?!?!?



More future ideas.

This is one of the only places to get an outdoor glimpse. Gate 7.


What the future transportation hub will look like.


Now, right next to the firehouse is the new Tribute WTC museum.




The second I walked in there was a video playing on a wall showing how the Twin Towers were used in many commercial ads back in the day.

also pictures of what it was like to show up for work, and how being there felt...


Anyone who worked down there will tell you how every floor in any of the buildings all had a campus like atmosphere that made working there enjoyable.



Model of what was...


videos on the wall showing the past...



Lunchtime was great, ALWAYS something happening.

Model of the sphere.

People's thoughts.



I ate here everyday, sometimes every meal. In the morning the cooks were so fast if they saw you coming in the door by the time you got to them, they knew what you wanted, and it was bagged with everyone screaming orders... but ALL of them knew the customers names, and we were all on a first name basis. It was an incredible atmosphere.


Still busy, and will be much more again one day !


Culture was always showing up.

work pictures, that just show enthusiasm and camaraderie...

All races, creeds and colors working together peacefully in harmony.



Sometimes, weird things would occur as well.




A family beacon.



Windows on the World.



A memory.

If you were going against the rush hour walking traffic whether it be in the morning or afternoon, you'd be in trouble fighting the crowds to get through !



Innocent.



It really was a place where smiles were NOT in short supply.



and yup, sometimes on a nice day, just go to the top to relax and enjoy the views.




and then... there was 1993..





Underground Garage where the bombs exploded.






and then...there was September 11, 2001.



and they ran...




Never ever will I remember a moment so clearly as when the second plane hit.




Recovered Airplane Window




The flyers for those who were thought to be missing...only to be lost forever.

Melted steel


Melted Steel with glass shrapnel



Bill's last pic...God Bless him.




Windows on the World Menu


Found utensils melted.


Computer Fragment


Elevator plaques.


Sprinkler sign.



Zhe Zack Zeng....one of the many heroes.


why ??


and the first responders kept doing what they were trained to do...RESPOND. Truly we must never forget our heroes especially the ones who still harbor sickness from working in that contaminated environment and our government doesn't give them the medical care they need.



Moira Smith died that day...

One of the many sheroes New York City was lucky to have...this country was lucky to have.






Sunny Mindel's Shoes




A VERY happy reunion.




Police Radio




Ruptured Scott Bottle worn by the FDNY, NYPD and PAPD that day.



US Tax Enforcement badge. Tax Enforcement were located on the 86 and 87th floors of Tower 2...They lost 39 workers that day.

Twisted Firefighter Officers Tool


Can you guess what these are ??







Aftermath.


Flag found in the ruins and part of a sprinkler.


Thank You New York's Finest.


Videos of ceremonies play as I walk through the museum.



More missing person flyers.



A painful sight to look at.


Later on there is a picture from the same view as this one...except there is nothing there now.

Steel Beam from WTC


Steel beam from WTC


The Sphere after the collapse.



A room that had pictures of all the people murdered that day in their normal activities. It was in this room that I came across pictures of a couple of people that I worked with many years ago, knew only their first name, and was completely shocked that they were among the people I knew who passed on. I felt a pain in my heart that I can't explain. They have tissues and benches, and someone left fruit on the bench which in some cultures is a nice gesture for those who have gone on to the next life. The King was feeling mighty sad in this room.....mighty sad.




3rd Grader Kevin Wang made this work of art...











I think most of us felt this way too...




Somewhere Today Quilt












Somewhere today our brothers and sisters are fighting a war for us here.
Somewhere today bloggers are writing about 9/11 so people will remember.

Somewhere in this room, The King found pictures that broke his heart.

Captain Patrick Brown who was in my tribute last year. Bless his soul.


Smiling. Happy. Innocent.


Taken too soon.


Raising families. Innocent.


We mourn.


Workers escaping after the 93 bombing.


A pain...that is too deep...is the comfort of a hug going to last ? No.....but it helps.

Hug someone today....you won't regret it.

and we pray, God do we pray.


and look for comfort...
and keep a spirit...

and remember...that we STAND together.... We are...will be...and shall overcome.


and yes...The King ... is human...and needs to exhale...as I wipe the tears from my cheeks.



The Tiles. I will be posting more pictures of the tiles in Greenwich Village during the month.


Hand painted tiles.



Italy

UK
France
Denmark


Not a sign you see often, especially if you are a Yankee fan.

Los Angeles
9-11-01

If you are going through hell...keep going. - Winston Churchill



Sadako Sasaki - 1955


Sadako's tiny origami crane



The children are always the strongest.











Visitor postcards. You can leave messages and they may go up in the future museum. If you click on the pic I believe you can read this one.


Tissues and Blank postcards. The book has old pics of the World Trade Center to reflect.

Japan Memorial


London Memorial- it says on the header "Grief is the price we pay for love."

Signed Chief's hat for support.


Items sent from round the world for support.


This was a visitor postcard they had hanging up...from Ireland...it says..
"I saw her face in the clouds of smoke that day 23rd October 08" Sean O'Dwyer




The Future.



450 million year Manhattan Schist Rock.



and of course a cheesy gift shop as you leave...


They sell a poster of this for $19.95 advertised as , own a picture of the flag that was found in the ruins.


and of course they sell those rubber bracelets...they say person to person.



This was the view I said earlier you would see nothing from...the only comfort I had taking this photo was the fact that one of my fellow yellow brothers was right in front of me....as I wondered how this void was such a part of so many lives...and why was it taken away.

So after a pretty emotional day...there is only one cure for me...off to my old stomping ground Majestic where I used to eat 3 times a week on the way home...you just can't walk by smelling that Pizza...so off I went.



Oh yeah...fresh pie with my slice warmin up...



This is just how the King ordered it 21 years ago, except I'd have two or three slices back then...only one today with my large Root Beer....and look at all those trimmings I got a choice of !


Just a little Garlic and I'm in heaven.


I was taking so many pictures of my food the girl behind the counter asked me if I wanted her to film me eating it !! I laughed and told her how I hadn't eaten here in 21 years, and that the sign below was the same one when I used to come here so often many years ago. She said "yeah, nothing changes in this place"... I ate my slice.


It was a nice way to end my day and lift my spirits a bit as I got the people from Majestic to do a video for The King !! Remember 9/11 !!



And God Bless you Michael Podilla and Majestic Pizza for cheering up my day. Here's our first take, its my first blooper !!



In closing I will leave you with this song called New York's Damn Bravest. It has become somewhat of an anthem for the Firefighters here in New York City and its a great song to boot. If you know a fireman , pass this song on to him, he'll thank you for it. My relative who gave his kidney to one of his twin son's wrote it , and sings it. I posted on them all earlier this year.

If not, reflect and remember. I hope all of you are safe and sound on this tragic day...a day NONE of us will ever forget. I know this post was long and if you made it this far I appreciate your time... and thanks for sharing part of this special day with me as I roam on these free streets of America hoping one day all our brothers and sisters can have there safe passage home from the war as I await to give them their ride home in my yellow chariot, until then I remain your friend...

-The King Of New York Hacks.

Peace out peepers, and God Bless America.

Listen to the song below, you won't regret it.


72 comments:

  1. I am sitting in a puddle of tears. This tribute is absolutely stunning, and moving, and heartbreaking and beautiful. I posted your link on my blog. I think everyone should spend some time in your NYC... today... for a first hand look at this great city.
    God bless you King and God bless American.
    xo

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  2. Amazing post. Thank you for sharing. I love your city so much, and I visited the Towers in 2000, and then went back in 2002, after some of the hotels and things had been opened. We stayed kitty corner from Ground Zero.

    I've been back a couple of times since then. We purchased items from that fire station and will only purchase from them, rather than all the vendors selling all over.

    Thank you for sharing your story.

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  3. I got here via Joanna Jenkin's post. This is an absolutely amazing look at that most tragic day. A wonderful tribute. Thank you very much!

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  4. king...once again, you knock it outof the park. amazing tribute. thank you for putting this together...wow.

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  5. Thank you. What an incredible post. Incredible. Tears are running down my face, just when I was sure they were all done.

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  6. Somewhere today, My SON serves as a U.S. Airman because he remembers. And, I remember.

    Thank you for extending my images of this day...blessings on you.

    Airman Frock's Step-Mom

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  7. This is a work of art and I thank you whole-heartedly for taking the time and the care to put it together like the true King that you are, Sir! x

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  8. I'm here from Joanna Jenkins blog. Of course, 9/11 has been on my mind today, but reading your post and seeing the pictures brings it all back. Thank you so much for taking the time to record all this and share it with us.

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  9. A riveting tribute on a sad day. Thank you.

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  10. Gave me chills! As I always say, I watched it being built, and I watched it fall. We went down to the site in December 2001, and it was gut wrenchingly sad. There is no other place in the world like NYC, I always feel like I am in another world when I am there. I do think that it is sad that there is not more progress on the site, but I guess that is politics for you!

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  11. I have only been to NY 2 times.I don't know alot about it except being very busy.HA! I'm doing everything I can to keep from crying. I feel the hurt and the sadness.Your pics are very ,very good.Those pics are just amazing. Iwish I could be there for the showing of lights all.Please if you could take some pics of today and tonight,I would love to see them. GOD BLESS, TAKE CARE, and ALOT OF HUGS.

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  12. Thank you for putting together one of the most sincere, heartfelt tributes to this awful day, one that I remember like it was yesterday. Those pictures are amazing and touching. Blessings and respect to you and everyone in New York. PS that pizza looked delish!!!!!!

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  13. I came here by Joanna Jenkins blog and this is an absolutley amazing tribute. I have never been to New York but hope to visit. Thankyou for sharing this all with us.

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  14. Came here thru Joanna Jenkins - beautiful tribute and thank YOU for sharing all of this with us, truly touching and making it "more real". Thank you!

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  15. Awesome tribute. Thank you for taking the time to walk round and share these photos with us. The World grieves with you.

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  16. This post took you so much time and heart to put together. It is the most amazing 9/11 post ever. I want to keep it on my computer and look through it every so often. Thank you for doing the work and putting this together and then sharing it with all of us. There is so much in this post that I can't even speak to only one note or photo. This is an entire package and cannot be broken up.

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  17. Thank you King for this. The pictures are heartbreaking and I don't think anyone could be there or see this without feeling so many emotions. Sadness, grief, anger.

    I had to explain to my son, 7, what the day was about because they studied it in school and he said the one thing I had no answer to - Why did someone do that?

    Why. There's no answer to that question.

    Thank you for this tribute today. I could not get through it without needing tissues.

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  18. Joanna from the Fifty Factor directed me here--I was engrossed, educated, emotional, despairing and hopeful throughout my entire read. Thanks for this tribute. Really beautiful and thorough.

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  19. Wow! I am really touched by all of this. You put a lot of work into this and it is really appreciated. Thank you for sharing such a beautiful and educational tribute.

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  20. As I sit and look on at your blog and the pictures you took, I sit back and reflect on that day what seems like a lifetime ago and then only minutes ago all at once. It's...strange to say the least.

    You touched briefly on what's going on at Ground Zero, and why it's taking so long. I asked this too. why with all our modern technology and blueprints in front of us is it taking so long to build there? it has been eight years. Eight....and so far only a few floor?

    It saddens me to see a place that should now be thriving still looking so woefully barren.

    Still....your tribute was wonderful. Thank you for taking us all on that walk with you. I made that walk once, during it's 3rd anniversary and cried so hard I managed to get my eyes swollen shut that night for a few hours.

    Its a long walk and the demons may never leave the souls of those of us who were alive and remember that day....but in time, hopefully we heal, but never forget. Walking that route for me was like walking into the deepest of hell and trying to find a light....

    Again, I'm no native New Yorker....hell, I'm not even American born, but to me what happened that day was a violation and crime against us all.

    I pray one day that the pain that has been etched into the stones and gravel in your streets and buildings fade and that each day brings comfort back to New York.

    It's been a long comment, but you know, sometimes things are worth fully expressing. so thank you. Thank you for your kind, thoughtful words, your simple pictures that mean more then a thousand words, but speak with a thousand voices, and your open honesty.

    Thank you.

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  21. its a long walk, isn't it? thanks for taking us with you, King. I remember the first time I went down there "after" - 2006 I think. The train still stops at WTC, which I am so glad they haven't changed the MTA, and you could still go through those set of doors at the end of the platform that "used" to go into the underground shopping concourse...there was a duane reade there I always stopped at before taking the long ride uptown. Looking down, it felt the same..but raising my eyes, now there was sky in front of me as I walked through.....

    Thank you so much for your kind words on my own tribute....and here's to the majestic - long may there be pie!!

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  22. I'm here by way of Joanna's blog and so very glad that she posted your link. This is the best tribute page I've seen. It felt as if I was there. Thank you for the taking the time to post the many pictures and tributes.

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  23. Beautiful!! Seriously I am linking!!

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  24. Absolutely beautiful tribute, King. Thanks so much for taking us along on your walk.

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  25. Beautiful tribute, King. I don't have anything to say that hasn't already been said a million times, but thanks for putting this up, it must have taken you a week!

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  26. Really really great post. I love NYC but have never lived there. Your photos are truly moving and chilling at the same time.

    Thank you for the positive words. There have been so many great posts and I was sickened to see some bloggers belittling 9.11 and making caustic comments about it. I would like them to visit NYPD and make those same comments.

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  27. as usual eddie, you touch my heart and looks like everyone elses as well. god bless your cabbie-drivin heart for sharing your city with us as you do.
    you are special, to all of us... and we love you.

    chris

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  28. That was very well done... It relayed so much emotion, my eyes are wet.

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  29. That was absolutely amazing! I was there last October and there sure wasn't any structures rising yet. It's nice to see two floors are underway.

    What an absolutely beautiful post you've made here!

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  30. This is an incredibly beautiful tribute. I can see that you poured your heart, sou and tears into it. So very touching. Thank you for that.

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  31. That picture of the lamb really brought it home for me--it looks identical to my son's most beloved lambie.

    My grandparents celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary in the old Vista Hotel at the base of the Towers. She saw the whole thing from happen from her apartment in Kip's Bay, and heard sirens for weeks going to the morgue. I wish she had been spared that moment in history. She died in 2006.

    I wish we all had been spared that moment in history.

    Beautiful tribute.

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  32. Thank you so much for chronicling that awful day and the world's response to it. I've been feeling a little melancholy since Friday. The feeling persists every year another anniversary goes by. I was in a classroom full of 16-year-olds on 9/11/01. I will never forget.

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  33. as usual and unbelievable tour through the eyes of a true NYer on one of the saddest days in history. I will never forget

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  34. Wow! This post is amazing ...! You've put together an incredible tribute.

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  35. Thank you for taking me with me to ground zero. This little lady from the Midwest will get there someday again, but not anytime soon. A fitting tribute. It touched me deeply.

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  36. Thank you for this post. I don't have enough tears to express my sorrows from that day.

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  37. Keep on keeping on brother. Be safe out there. Better Days.

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  38. You have a talent, and an eye for what we all should be looking for- and at..May you never lose that God given talent..

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  39. Thanks for taking that trek for all of us. What I feel looking at this post cannot adequately be put into words, but it will always be inside my head.

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  40. Still heartbreaking 8 years later.

    Thank you for the post.

    GG

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  41. Wow, that was an awesome post. THANK YOU SO MUCH for all of your wonderful pictures and sharing that with us. I hope some day I'll be able to get there.

    THANK YOU AGAIN FOR SHARING...

    REMARKABLE!

    God Bless!
    - Jennifer

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  42. thank you. that was amazing.
    bonnye a taxi dispatcher in sacramento

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  43. perfect tribute, thank you my brother!

    may all those rotten bastards burn in hell! GRRRRRRRRR

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  44. wow, that was really something. Thank you so much for doing that. I am back in NY in October, I'm really looking forward to being there, there's really no other place even nearly as special to me.

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  45. It has been fading, so thank you for strengthening our resolve. Really well done.

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  46. This is an awe-inspiring post. Thanks so much for sharing. And thanks for visiting http://www.cedarfortauthors.blogspot.com/ today. Nice getting to know you, King of the NYK Taxi Cabs.

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  47. Dear King of New York; This was quite a surprise when I clicked on you name in the comment section of my blog: "Let The Truth Be Known", to find these fantastic photos. I lost a cousin, Alan Bondarenko, and a man whom I met many years ago, but considered a friend, Fr. Mychal Judge.

    My cousin Allen worked on the 91st floor of Tower Two, Fr. Mychal was doing his duty as a priest and NYFD Chaplain when he was killed administering Last Rites to another fallen firefighter. I haven't been back to NYC since I was there in 1989, but I am hoping to get back to visit the Memorial museum, and to have another slice of Majestic pizza.

    Thank you for this posting and for visiting my blog. God Bless.

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  48. That was a great tribute, King. Good work.

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  49. Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful tribute. The photos are very moving. I have never seen any of them before and it was sad to look back on that day but I am so glad that I had the chance to see it from your perspective. I pray we never forget how quickly life can change.

    Thank you also for stopping by my blog. Yeah! You are the 100th follower. I think that calls for a toast. Cheers!!

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  50. hey,thanks for finding my blog-I will definitely be following yours from now on!!

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  51. Fantastic piece of work, here King. Thank you SO much for coming to my blog & introducing yourself. And thank you, thank you for this intimate tribute. You've made me feel like I was walking w/ you.

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  52. I can not find the appropriate words to express my gratitude for your tribute.

    Your time, patience, love and yes, even your grief poured into those pictures and into your words. I can only leave you with "thank you" while you left me with so much more.

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  53. Your post really moved me. Very well done and very powerful.

    I can honestly say this is the finest tribute to 9/11 I have ever seen and read.

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  54. Amazing.. Unforgettable.. God Bless America!

    PS - You should supply tissue for this post. We wept then, we continue to weep..

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  55. Simply outstanding, excellent post. Thank you.

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  56. Simply outstanding, excellent post. Thank you.

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  57. Sir, your words and photos are truly beautiful - all of the pictures of things recovered from the wreckage will haunt me forever, but the one that got to me the most was the one of the airplane window. And the sheer volume of missing posters is heartbreaking.

    Thank you so much for taking these pictures, for those of us who can't be there. But next time I'm in New York, I'm totally getting me a slice of majestic pizza ;)

    Peace x

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  58. great job!! bet that took along time to put together, glad your smart enough to know the times worth it.

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  59. What an amazing post. Top notch job!!!

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  60. Wow. This was an incredibly powerful post.

    I actually came here to tell that I left you an "award" at my site. You don't have to claim it, of course. But it's a way to tip my hat your way and direct any of the readers of my blog (which are not near as many as yours) to yours.

    Other than that, I'm at a loss for words now. Thanks for another incredible post.

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  61. absolutely amazing post king.
    i cry.
    what a wonderful tribute.
    thanks for stopping by my site so i was fortunate enough to have seen this!

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  62. Imus Update King,

    Burying Don Imus, Anatomy of a Scapegoat by Michael Awkward an African American Imus Fan.

    You all have been reading where they are trying to blame the census
    takers death in Clay Co.,Ky., on Fox News Pundits and Tea Party and
    Town Hall Protesters. There strategy isn’t new Media Matters for
    America was monitoring Imus for 2 years to get something they could
    target him with to destroy his career. But that’s not exactly news, and
    Glenn Beck a frequent guest on Imus in the Morning, is well aware of
    what they will try and do to him.

    http://youhavetobethistalltogoonthisride.blogspot.com/2009/09/burying-don-imus-anatomy-of-scapegoat.html

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  63. hi eddie, havent heard from ya in a while. hope all is well. hey hon, left ya a lil prezzie over at my blog... come and get it!

    c

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  64. I don't know how I missed this post but it is a beautiful tribute to a tragic day. Thank you for sharing.
    xx

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  65. Wow. Rarely am I left speechless. THE best tribute I've seen yet.

    You Rock. For Real. Thank you.

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  66. Thanks for making us all more aware...this should be something which the whole World could see!
    Char

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  67. An amazingly beautiful tribute ~ I sit here in my office, tears quietly rolling down my face thinking of that day. Very well done.

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  68. Very nice post indeeed, where did you find those pieces of 9/11 Art, (the drawing), quilts, tiles and stuff. I will want to check it out someday, thank you...

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