Flight 3407

Friday, February 13, 2009

I was catching my last 20 minutes of sleep this morning when Michael came in and stood at the end of the bed and said, "Heather."

I could tell by the tone of his voice that something was wrong, so I sort of frantically asked, "What? What?!"

"There was a plane crash in Buffalo."

Needless to say: Not a great way to begin a morning.

When I hear of things like this, there is always that initial panic while I sort of take a mental inventory of the whereabouts of everyone I love. Since this particular tragedy happened right in Buffalo, it was particularly worrisome.

After watching a few minutes of the news on CNN, I quickly sent text messages to several friends from college to make sure everyone was accounted for. Thankfully, the people I know and love, as well as the people they know and love, are all safe. I am grateful to not have been personally touched by this tragedy.

But you know what? I'm still touched by it. Because it's Buffalo, for crying out loud.

It still has not quite sunk in that this happened so close to home. Even though I'm 60 miles away, it feels like it happened right in my city, just because of how much time we spend in Buffalo. We went to college not too far from Buffalo, and we have countless friends and family members there. It's like a second home.

And plane crashes that garner national news attention? Deadly plane crashes that kill 50 people? They happen in other places. Not in Buffalo.

The problem is: That's not only naive--it's untrue.

I pray for the poor passengers that were on that plane who had to live the last few moments of their lives in terror. And I pray even harder for their poor families and friends who were left behind, and will live the rest of their lives carrying the pain of their losses.

This has hit me slightly harder than some other incidents. Not only because it occurred so close to home, but also because we spent a lot of time on planes just a few days ago. It has made me think back to our takeoffs and landings, the small amounts of turbulence we experienced, and conversations we had with friends about fears of flying.

All of it just makes me realize that in reality, something like this can happen at any time. To anyone.

Even so, I do not live in fear of it. I mean, how can you live in fear of it? The fact of the matter is, something horrible happened last night, and people woke up this morning and boarded planes anyway. After a car crash, we still get back into our cars. After a drowning, we still get back in the ocean. Life must and does go on.

But of course, we do remember. And I feel for all of the people who lost loved ones last night. I hope that the recovery efforts and subsequent investigation give these people at least some of the answers that I am sure they are seeking--and the peace they need to move forward.

R.I.P. Passengers and Crew of Flight 3407


Anonymous,  February 16, 2009 at 5:37 PM  

if only it had turned out like the last plane crash :(

Elyzabeth February 16, 2009 at 8:41 PM  

One of my co-worker was on that plane. It is definitely a tragedy.

Jessica,  February 16, 2009 at 9:15 PM  

Yes this hit close to home for me as well although I think all tragedies tend to do this. My fiance's entire family lives in the Buffalo are and it is weird to think that many of them travel for work so you never know. FFIL works for the Sheriff department and you can bet they've been busy.

craftybitch February 17, 2009 at 8:35 AM  

Heather, you summed up my thoughts perfectly. It just hit way too close to home.

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