April 19, 1995- Time for Peace, Hope & Serenity! BUT Never Shall We Forget!

Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building before the bombing

Has it been that long ago that I walked through the doors of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City?  That’s rhetorical! I know exactly the last time was in March of 1995! Back then I had a little consulting and bookkeeping business and made several trips a year to OKC for my clients. A lot of what I used to do is now moved into the ‘cyber age’, but back then most  required tasks to be completed in person.

It was not unusual to see a smile as you went about your chores once entering the building. I did not know all the people behind those smiles personally, but to say I grew accustomed to seeing those faces is a understatment! Some faces I would never see again!

17 years ago. as the devastation unfurled, I was glued to my television  in hopes of seeing at least just one face I recognized. I did recognize one, it was a face of shock and yet it also was face of survival. Yes, one of the 637  who survived. Those survivors, like the nearly 100-year-old American Elm (now dubbed ‘The Survivor Tree’), is a testament to the human spirit. An affirmation of Peace and Hope.

Last year during Oklahoma Arbor Week, The Survivor Tree was honored and celebrated as a symbol of resilience and strength. As with all survivors of that day… a symbol of Healing!

At 9:02 on the morning of April 19, 1995, Our nation lost its innocence. The moment 168 men, women, AND children lost their lives. The moment that 637 souls battled for survival. The moment families were changed forever!

So we shall not forget those stolen from loving families, those heros whose endurance never failed until the last was pulled from the ruins, and outpouring of love from citizens of the great nation we call HOME!

On this day in 1995 as well as that day on September 11, 2001, America with all her diversity, shows the world and her enemies exactly what resilience is!

Feel free to read my rememberence post from last year HERE!.


Oklahoma City – April 19,1995 – We Shall not Forget !!

Hard to believe it has been 16 years since Oklahoma City, the state of Oklahoma, and our Great Nation suffered one of the worst acts of terrorism on home soil. Until September 11th, The Alfred P. Murrah Federal building bombing was the most vicious act of evil on home soil.

Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building before the bombing

 This repulsive and offensive act stole 168 lives. 19 of those lives were just children under the age of 6. I refuse to discuss the beastly depraved creature and his cronies that caused this disaster. This is MY blog and I choose to talk of survivors and heros who risked their lives to aid the fallen. I am talking about the policemen, firemen, and the average people on the street who rushed to aid the more than 680 injured by the blast.

Murrah Federal Building After


The Survivor Tree

 I remember April 19th as well as I remember September 11. I recall the vivid raw emotion that played out on the television. I remember the gut wrenching pain as workers carried small wrapped bodies out of the devastation. I remember the sheer misery and turmoil in the faces of rescue workers.
Now that I have tears in my eyes, let me also say that out of the chaos of that day you will find heroism. The Survivor Tree (named for surviving the Bomb blast) stands as a symbol of the endurance of Oklahomans. Did you know more than 9,000 units of blood were donated to the Red Cross. Over 100,000 meals were served by The Salvation Army. Nearly 20,000 of those meals were provided by the Oklahoma Restaurant Association who were holding a trade show in Oklahoma City at the time of the bombing. Lets not forget the 29 million dollars raised for the Memorial that now stands where the Murrah Building once stood.

Motto "We come here to remember those who were killed, those who survived and those changed forever. May all who leave here know the impact of violence. May this memorial offer comfort, strength, peace, hope and serenity"

 So we shall not forget those stolen from loving families, those heros whose endurance never failed until the last was pulled from the ruins, and outpouring of love from citizens of the great nation we call HOME!

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