I began my day as I did any other. 0630 I was at Hangar 301 in Patuxent River Maryland, in the Washington D.C.area. As 0900 aproached I was just sitting down to get some quality training on a specific piece of avionics equiptment. I will never forget the shock and disbelief I felt upon hearing of the first plane crash, it must have been a terrible accident we all thought, then the next one, as the cowardly attacks grew closer and the Pentagon was attacked it was clear that nothing I thought was normal as far as military life would ever be the same again. The base went onto lock-down, no trafic on or off, this lasted for 2-3 days. Watches were posted at every building 24 hours a day for weeks. I will never forget staring into the dark nights sky the evening of September 11 radioing into the control tower every moving object seen in the sky, wondering, waiting. Yet noone complained, this is what we were there for the 12 hour shifts were long but every one of my shipmates would jump at the chance to stand those watches again. For this I am proud, proud of my comrads around the world, and proud of the everyday people who became heros that terrible day. I would like to report to the American people that its military is stronger today than ever, more secure than ever, and more dedicated to their duties than ever. I remind everyone to go on living their lives and remember those we lost not only on that day but throughout history, both at home and abroad. Also I would like to remember quote from Benjamin Franklin, “…those who sacrifice liberty for freedom…deserve neither”. Steer the other way if you find yourself falling into this trap, live life free, and be especially proud to be American.