I sometimes think of my ancestors who fought their way to America. They came in the mid-1600’s, traveled to Pennsylvania and then down to North Carolina where, with a land grant, they settled in the foothills in what is now Lincoln County. I have no way to comprehend the courage it took for a mother and father to load their children on a wooden boat and cross the ocean, leaving everything known and dear, forever. Yet, they did it.
They came to make a place for their future. They had a dream, and, in some far-reaching way, my existence today is a part of that dream. Their courage made the way for me.
I have a big responsibility to them. They gave me life. They gave life to my life. They made me an American. I don’t know them, and I never can. I do, however, feel them inside of me, and I am in awe of what they have done for me.
There are many Americans who have given everything for me. Nothing I can say says what I feel in my heart, especially today, the anniversary of 9/11.
We love you. We remember you. And we will never forget.