Sunday after the World Trade Center attack, Gail and I spoke to 200 Salvation Army officers and cadets in New York. Then two officers took us downtown.
Our first view of Manhattan came as we passed over the George Washington Bridge. The World Trade Center was missing. For those of us who pride ourselves in being full-time or part-time New Yorkers, who know what it's like to get up each morning and look to see if the Towers are visible or in the clouds, it was the first of many shocks.
We drove down the West Side Highway, passing through checkpoint after checkpoint with our special credentials. The Salvation Army insignia is pure gold.
We parked and walked and then, suddenly, there was Ground Zero, six square blocks of twisted rubble, 110 floors of two imploded buildings, and their entire volume is less than two stories high. It is like a gigantic European plaza with open sky. But each building surrounding the plaza is lifeless, every window (and often the façade) gone.
Then you notice the ...1