Remembering 9/11

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Makensie Cooper

On an ordinary Tuesday in 2001, a first grader at Emerson-Gridley Elementary School in Erie, Pennsylvania, was listening to a lesson when the teacher stopped suddenly and turned on the news.

The school was quickly placed on lockdown as teachers and students anxiously watched as the horrific terrorist attacks occurred in Pennsylvania, New York and Washington D.C.

Twenty-two years later, Staff Sgt. Zahmann McAdory, 15th Aircraft Maintenance weapons load crew member, recalls his personal account of how the tragic events affected his life and impacted his decision to serve.

A Pennsylvania native, McAdory remembers everything about that day. Most notably, he remembers walking into school the next day to a memorial display of all the names of those who were killed and missing, and being surrounded by friends.

McAdory was later interested in joining the Air Force and recalls his recruiter talking about different jobs available and recommending weapons.

“I realized how big of an impact my job had while on deployment in the desert… to see the jets fly out and come back with nothing and then reload them to do it again,” said McAdory. “I finally understood the big impact of it then because we are doing what we are supposed to do and defending our country.”

McAdory has served in the Air Force for ten years, and has never forgotten the tragedy that led many of his fellow service members to join the armed services.

“I feel good, I am happy to be a part of something bigger, and to see my work is not being unnoticed, and has a huge impact on the Air Force,” said McAdory.

Two decades have passed since the attacks. Many Airmen today were very young during the attacks and some were not even born. However, even for those too young to remember, the impacts of that tragic day are still deeply felt.

By remembering the heroes of 9/11, service members are continuing to honor the men and women that sacrificed their lives.

We will never forget.