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For me and I’m sure many others, February 12, 2009 was one of those moments in your life where you’ll always say “I remember exactly where I was, what I was doing … at the moment I heard of the crash.”
My wife Laurie and I have always had an unwritten rule that we don’t swear in front of our kids and hold to that today, even with them in their twenties. Six years ago tonight I was watching the movie “Eagle Eye” with my then 16-year old son Alex. My pager went off for about the sixth time that day and I immediately let out an involuntary “Ho—ly Sh**!”
Sensing that something obviously wasn’t right, Alex asked me: “What’s wrong Dad?”
I said, “I can’t believe it, but… I’m going to a plane crash.” That was Thursday night about 10:30pm. I didn’t see him again until 7pm Saturday night. In the meantime, my wife Laurie, quite reluctantly, had flown to Wisconsin to see her sister and I didn’t see her for nearly a week.
This typed and [hand edited] note hangs on the bulletin board of my office at our Erie County Emergency Services Training & Operations Center:
OFFICIAL STATEMENT FROM THE FAMILIES OF CONTINENTAL FLIGHT 3407:
“On behalf of the families of Continental Flight 3407, we would like to express our deepest gratitude to all of the agencies who have worked so hard, and in such a professional way during our time of need. The respect you have given to us, our families, and especially the respect [and dignity] you are giving to our loved ones, who were aboard Continental Fllght 3407, is valued and appreciated by all of us.”
That’s what this job, this life is about.
Here’s a reminder to all those who were a part of, or touched by this tragedy to Clean the Litterbox!