In Honor of Michael Joseph Duffy - 1 of 2,996
The morning was perfect, an indicator of a beautiful late summer day. The oppressive heat of such a short time ago was gone. The sky a clear crystal blue, the sharp beauty of it a comfort and a promise of the coming day, the coming season, the wonder of life itself.
Michael Joseph Duffy, age 29. What had his morning been like? Had he had a fun weekend with family and friends? I like to think his Monday had been a good day, a good start to his work week. He was a bond salesman and likely on h is way up the corporate ladder. This day, this lovely morning - did it hold promise for good? How could it not? He was young, handsome, beloved by his family, a vibrant part of life, a jovial member of his circle of friends. Ah, with a name like Michael Joseph Duffy - wouldn't that be a good Irish boy's name? Wasn't he blessed and beloved by God, our almighty father? Oh, yes, indeed - mightily blessed.
And in to work he would have gone, maybe considering a day of 'playing hooky' to enjoy the day. But responsibility called and he answered.
This day, this beautiful day of promise was Tuesday September 11, 2001.
This day would end in tragedy and sorrow for too many. This day would see our nation attacked. This day would be the day America the Beautiful would be filled with sorrow, would be bent by the weight of the tears of our whole nation.
Remember, remember the knife thrust to the heart of the US. Remember that this young man, this vibrant young man full of potential, full of life, full of energy was murdered that day five years ago.
Consider this -- for eleven days his family hoped and prayed and cried a river of tears that they would have a miracle, that he would be okay, that he had only been injured and unconscious, perhaps. This murder victim -- for that is precisely what he is -- was not confirmed dead until September 22, 2001. Eleven days his family held in suspense, suspecting, fearing the worst because who could have survived such an atrocity? Eleven days of torture as they tried to hold on to the hope of a miracle for them, a miracle for Michael, knowing, knowing, fearing as the little thought ran through their minds - who could survive such an atrocity. Some did, of course. Some lucky few of the people who had not gotten out did survive.
Can there be a healing? There must be a healing. This young man who bore hopes and dreams and promise for a bright future is our nation. I do not minimize the sorrow of his loss. I have great empathy for those who loved him and lost him. God rest him, God ease the pain of his loved ones. Michael Joseph Duffy - one of our nation, representing our nation, the sorrow and the joy of our nation. Honor him this day, honor all of those lost this day. Our nation was attacked. This young man was attacked and murdered.
This was not his fault. This was not the fault of the United States. What stupid drivel is that? This is a personal, unwarranted attack - not on our nation alone - but on every individual in our nation, every individual in the world.
His family takes it personally. We all need to take it personally. To honor those murder victims, to honor those who tried to rescue them, to honor the families of all whose lives were stolen, we must take it personally. We must fight evil, for evil this was.
Michael, I did not know you. I honor you and say a prayer for you this day. I pray for solace for your loved ones, rest for your spirit, renewal of hope for all who hold honor in their hearts. God rest you and keep you.