Sunday, September 11, 2011

9-11-01: A Tribute to NY

I didn't think I had anything to write.

I didn't know if I wanted to write about 9/11/01.

I didn't think it seemed appropriate to tell you where I was.

Because I wasn't personally affected.  Sure I was in Washington, D.C and my school was evacuated.  I was 19 years old and pretty clueless about what was going on in the world. But I was safe.
I've been watching tributes all week.  I've cried a million tears.  I've been heartbroken by these stories.

I thought about how it could all relate to this blog.

And then I realized it does.
I have enormous respect and admiration for New York City and New Yorkers.  
Boston will always be my home and have my heart. But I appreciate New York.  Because New Yorkers are passionate about their city, about their people, their sports and cultures.  I realize this every time I visit New York.
But I learned the most about New York the day I ran the 
New York City Marathon.
I've run three marathons in less than a year.  And all of them were hard for me.  But the one I look back on the most is New York.

New York is a microcosm of different cultures, ethnicities, sights, religions, loves, beliefs and faiths.  

During those 26.2 miles, you never get near Ground Zero.

But the passion of New Yorkers is all around you.  People of New York love their city.  And they should.  The city is resilient and full of life even after the worst tragedy since Pearl Harbor.

So if you are running the New York City Marathon this year, dedicate the race to the fallen.  Run this race for the people who can't. When you go through all five boroughs, realize how lucky you are to be there.  Realize how special this marathon is.  Look around at all the New Yorkers cheering for you and savor in the many different sights you get to see while running 26.2 miles.  The race is inspirational and moving.  And this year, it means even more.

New York is a special special place. A place I will always love.

I will never ever forget what happened on 9-11-01.

Take a look at this commercial if you haven't seen it.  Truthfully, seeing this ad inspired this post.


  1. Oh my gosh, that video is amazing. Definitely just made me cry. Damn singing kids.

    I'm like you in that my 9/11 story seems pretty, well, standard? If that's the right word? I was at school in New Hampshire and they sent us home for the day. I spent the entire day watching footage with my family in the living room. It was tragic and scary, but I, too, was safe at home with my loved ones right there.

    I love what you wrote about the NYC Marathon. What an incredible experience.

  2. great post, Lizzy. All of the coverage and ads have me in tears too. It amazes me how 9/11 has affected everyone differently, no matter where we were.

    And, I truly believe the NYC Marathon is the best day in New York - the city is just SO energetic, alive and positive. So glad you got to experience it!

  3. Ah I saw that on TV last night and loved it. This is a great post! You're right - New Yorkers have so much pride in their city and it truly is a unique, strong and special place.
    And I think that as Amercians, all of us were affected by 9/11, and we all have certain feelings about it, regardless if we knew anyone who was killed that day. I'm glad you shared your thoughts - you said it very well and this is a really nice tribute to NY.

  4. I live in Dallas now, but will always be a New Yorker and thank you for these words. There is a tendency to believe that all New Yorkers are a-holes and what a horrible place to live, etc. In reality we just love New York and believe there is no place like it in the world and the truth of the matter is there isn't.

    Only in New York can you have the world within blocks of each other. Little Italy next door to Chinatown, which is around the corner from the Yuppie crowd and down the block from what can be described as Jerusalem. Get on a train and go a few stops and end up in Puerto Rico or the Dominican Republic. That is New York and that is something that will never leave me.

  5. Beautiful post Lizzy! I love that commerical, so moving! I wasn't sure I'd write about 9/11 either but it was somewhat therapeutic in a way. I think it affected all of us more than we realize!

  6. I love this and I love you :) And I cannot watch that ad one more time. I have no more tears left for it.

  7. Great post - I wasn't living here in 2001, but have lived here for the past 7 years so I feel very connected to the city. It really is a great city with great energy. I consider my life so "normal and carefree" here that thinking about what happened that day and how the city was paralyzed is truly amazing. How the city has bounced back is also truly amazing.

    And, now, I'm really excited to run NYC this year!

  8. Couldn't agree with you more! Even after working IN the city for almost a year, it wasn't until I ran the marathon last year that I realized how amazing the entire city is. Thinking back to those 4 hours and everything I experienced makes me so proud and thankful. And I'm SO excited to do it all again in a couple months!