Today is April 19, 2010, which marks the 15 year anniversary of the OKC Murrah Federal Building Bombing. I remember that day, fairly vividly. I was in band at Hollis and we were on our way to Stillwater for a competition. We drove through OKC not long after the bombing happened. I remember being on the bus and everyone commenting on the huge cloud of smoke that we could see coming from the downtown area. Wow, huge fire, we thought. It was sometime later while we were in Stillwater that our band director delivered the news to us. I think I was a little too young and naive at the time to understand the magnitude of this event. It took a few days of watching the news footage and finding out that people I knew were affected by the situation before I really understood how huge this day was. It seems crazy that it has been 15 years now. A few years ago, I went through the bombing memorial, and it's a very powerful place. I learned many details that I'd never known before and it's very moving to go through all the rooms and see the remaining damage. I think the most moving part is the room with pictures of the 168 victims. I didn't know any of the people personally, but it's still hard to see all of them and imagine the horrible time their families went through.
I think days like this make me even more grateful for who I have in my life. I have been so blessed to be surrounded by wonderful family and friends. It seems like many people I know are dealing right now with the death of a friend or horrible tragedies affecting family members or some other unimaginable issue. All of this has also made me grateful for those in my life. I just wish it didn't take tragic events to make me so aware of how precious life really is and how appreciative I should be.