Another year, Another Anniversary

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Photo by Helen Grant

By Sam Scovill

There were children born on the day the Murrah Bombing happened. Today they are old enough to vote.

I do fear that people will forget. As tragic as the events of the last week are, they are still eclipsed by the magnitude of what happened here in Oklahoma City, and not just in casualties. Terrorism and tragedy were not the norm in this nation. Even now, when examining the events that unfolded, they are so utterly incomprehensible that people would rather create a reality that makes sense to them than submit to the awful truth.

Time passes, memories fade, wounds heal. But I won’t ever forget.

I won’t ever forget hearing the blast sitting in the classroom when I was 9, even though I was many miles away. I won’t ever forget seeing the destroyed building in person, my mom taking me so I would remember that I saw the destruction personally. I’ll never forget my dad’s work on the site, what it did to him or how it changed him forever. I’ll never forget my dad’s shoebox full of mementos from his work there, and how he donated them to the museum as a means to move on. I’ll never forget walking into that Murrah Building as a child to open up my very first bank account, only to see the people who worked there become victims.

Oklahoma City will always be defined by that blast, both in the eyes of the nation and of the eyes of its native sons and daughters. But this city has stared tragedy in the eyes, and tragedy flinched first. We have come so far in the nearly 20 years and there is no sign of slowing down. When I look back at where we’ve been, I can’t help but have pride in my city.

No matter where life takes me, there will always be a date each year that will bring my thoughts back to Oklahoma City. I am a son of this city and always will be. It’s now up to us to make sure that future generations learn why we have pride and love for this place, and make sure as hell they never forget that.

I’m proud to be an Oklahoman.

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