The P.A.

A weekly address from Patrick Adams,
President of St. Louis Community Credit Union

I Remember

On September 15th, 2015, posted in: Uncategorized by

field of flagsI was too young to remember the assassination of John F. Kennedy. I was a first-grader, and about the only thing I recall from my first foray into my inaugural elementary school year was a trip to my teacher’s house to see her husband practice taxidermy. When you’re 6 years old, seeing a guy stuffing what was shortly before a real live fox is as memorable as it comes. As a sidebar, political correctness would never allow for such a field trip to exist today. Especially given that we walked to our teacher’s house. OMG!!!

Sadly, a few years later, I have a more vivid recollection of the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King. I remember my mom and dad’s stunned looks and deafening silence after the announcement. My family and I knew we had lost a very special man.

Fourteen years ago, I remember the attack of 9/11 like it was yesterday. My heart was broken back then, and to call it up every year summons a lot of emotions that run as deep now as on the day of the attack.

September 11, 2001, was another Chamber of Commerce day in Orlando, Florida. We sat at the Marriott eating breakfast — four of us. I had finished speaking to a conference held in Disney World the day before. On that day, there would be a meeting in the AM with Enterprise Car Sales officials prior to a meeting with a credit union in mid-town Orlando. Shortly thereafter, a flight home would be welcomed. Things changed.

A rather pedestrian comment started making its way around the breakfast nook that a plane had flown into a building in New York City. Within moments, the pedestrian reference escalated to confusion and concern for what had really happened. Then terror, fright and uncertainty took over like a plague. My three business associates and I soon knew that our meeting would be canceled and our primary objective would be trying to get home.

Being with Enterprise officials afforded me the opportunity to tag along with their procurement of a rental car that we proceeded to drive home — fast. It was in many ways the longest car ride of my life — not because of the miles. We did what we could to maintain our sanity by playing trivia, etc. After all, these weren’t close friends, they were business associates. Emotions and innermost fears were delayed for people we knew better. For now, trivia and inane discussion took center court.

I remember it well. My thoughts were simple. Home was where I wanted to be. I’ve never wanted to be home more. Comfort would come from being with my family. I did a lot of praying under my breath, using the façade of mindless trivia as a disguise for the deep-seated anxiety and fear that had taken up residence. “Just get me home” was the real driver.

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