Letters to the Editor

Be proud of Beamer name

In the small circle each of us occupy, we live and die and have great meaning to those close to us. But to the world at large, we disappear without a trace unless fate decides otherwise.

Sometimes an event comes along and we’re given a choice. Todd Beamer, who represents all those aboard United Airlines Flight 93, was asked that question and answered with enough courage to believe in something larger than himself and to act on that knowledge. Beamer had greatness thrust upon him that day and he rose to the occasion, as did everyone else on the plane. In the last few seconds of their lives, they decided to become more than they had been before. They chose greatness by taking a stand, by thinking of the greater good instead of their own safety.

But life is like that. One day we’re all called upon to choose. Maybe it’s as small a choice as defending someone from a bully at school, or maybe it’s as large as saving the lives of others at the cost of your own.

We never know when our chance will come. Todd Beamer and the rest of the passengers were just ordinary people wanting to live their lives. I’m sure the last thing they wanted was to be in the situation they found themselves in.

The name Todd Beamer now stands for ordinary citizens who, when called, rise to the occasion and so achieve greatness. I’m sure Beamer, and the rest, knew their chances of getting out of the situation alive were slim, but they acted anyway.

Todd Beamer is a hero for our times and will inspire the students of the new high school named in his honor of everyone on the plane, –– indeed, all the heroes of 9-11 in New York City and Washington, D.C. Because of their example, ordinary citizens can be inspired to stand up for what’s right and fight for what they believe in. And isn’t that what we have heroes for?

Robin Landry


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