|On the morning of April 19, 1995, Timothy McVeigh
parked a rental truck with explosives in front of the Alfred P. Murrah
Federal Building and, at 9:02 AM, a massive explosion sheared the entire
north side of the building killing 168 people, 19 of them children.
I, along with the rest of America, grieved with
the people from my home state. Ten days later, on April 29, 1995,
my beloved Daddy died. The day I returned to the airport in
Oklahoma City to return to Oregon was rainy and dismal. I wanted
to see the site myself. The closest we could get by car was about
five blocks away on the blast side of the building. Even from that
distance, the sight was astonishing - and painful.
In July, 1999 Momma passed away. When we
made the trip to the airport we were able to stop and walk to the site,
which was surrounded by a fence. Just as the site of the
demolished building was overwhelming two years before, the site of the
fence was as well - but for a different reason. The fence enclosed
three sides of the area and every square inch was covered with items
left by visitors from all over the world. It was breathtaking.
In the years since, a beautiful memorial has been
built. It has an understated and powerful impact. A museum
and many educational programs have been added.
The Memorial Institute
for the Prevention of Terrorism began operation in 2000.
This tragedy deeply affected
me - not just the bombing and the senseless loss of life it caused but
the relationship it had to the deaths of my parents.
Many terrible things happen in our world - this
was not the worst or the least. The words "Never Forget" seem to
be overused. So, it is my hope that you will visit these web-sites
- and perhaps the Memorial itself, in person, - and "Always Remember."