Mr. Oscar Nesbitt was my neighbor on Convent Avenue for just a little over nine months. I had moved to New York earlier that winter and we were introduced later one Spring afternoon. Though I don't remember all the details, I recall our first interaction going something like this:
Mr. Oscar: "Helllloooo, deary....whaaat's your name?" (Cheshire cat grin)
Me: "Rachel, nice to meet you."
Neighbor 1 (playfully): "Oh, don't talk to him, he's a dirty old man!"
Mr. Oscar (to me): "Let me tell you something, sweety, I may be a lot of 'tings, but 'old' AIN'T one of them..." (insert eye wink).
Yes, Mr. Oscar was up there in age (sorry Mr. O) and although he was not "dirty" he did swear up and down that he was quite debonair. However, he never got the chance to put all his suaveness and talk and strut into action toward his ultimate desire - a wife and child - because he lost his life on September 11, 2001. He worked in the 2nd Tower (can't recall if it was the North or South) on the 84th floor. Judging by all of the media diagrams and crash reenactment, if he was in his chair at the time of impact, he would have been among the blessed, as the second plane struck right between the 92nd and 82nd floors. Therefore, the suffering, dreadful decisions and desperation that the other employees faced would have remained foreign to him in his final minutes on earth.
All of us - especially the New Yorkers - who survived 9-11 bore witness to the pain, depression, fear and grief that followed for days, weeks, months and still lingers with so many of us today. So, my post is not to rehash all things so bad. Rather, since I have been blessed to live four years beyond said catastrophe and God has blessed me with bouncing back, persevering and moving on, I'd never want to live this day again without pausing to reflect on the memory of the innocent people who lost their lives at the hand of evil.