Wednesday, November 18, 2009
So many lives were changed ten years ago, when they woke up on the morning of November 18th, 1999, to the news that Bonfire had fallen and people might have been hurt. That moment is frozen in perfect clarity in my mind, but the week that followed when we learned that in fact twelve Aggies had died and we mourned them is such a blur.
I did not know a single person who died in the Bonfire collapse personally, but I understand a huge part of who they were, because I understand what it means to love Texas A&M.
I'm somewhat surprised that it is still such a painful memory for me. I cannot watch the news footage or read an article about that day, about those twelve, without crying. Maybe it's because all of us who were there that day, who saw those logs, who stood and prayed, who walked around a campus that has never been so quiet again, were forever changed. We went to sleep as kids who thought that nothing bad could ever happen to us and awoke to find that indeed the greatest of tragedies could come without warning and steal away members of our family and with it our innocence.
To the families of the twelve, to the survivors of the accident, to the friends and loved ones, I am praying for you today, for a peace that passes understanding to accompany you today and everyday. The sacrifice that you made on that day ten years ago you should not have had to make, but know that you are supported by the Aggie family, and your children will always be remembered by us.