September twenty fifth, 2016 will remain as an everlasting memory for me. I was very fortunate to be part of an outstanding event alongside my fellow IAVA veterans. It was particularly important to me to be part of the Tunnel-to-Towers event as it symbolizes in my opinion patriotism and togetherness of all people around the world. I met and was surrounded by persons from all types of trades and from all over the country. All shared one thing in common, we all refuse to let an event such as 9/11 bring us down.
We all went for different reasons but our faces all blended in a sea of resilience, love and strength. Toward the end of my journey through the tunnel, I tried to imagine what those who on that fateful day went through and it literally brought tears to my eyes. I will forever admire their courage and strength. 9/11 was the reason I left for the US Navy on September 27, 2001. I felt that I needed to be part of the movement to show the world that America will remain strong and that even a 17 year old will not second guess doing her part.
I have already planned on attending next year as well and will bring my 6 year old daughter, Sofia, with me. She loved the pictures and stories I told her and I am filled with joy with her decision to join me next year and thereafter.
Francisca A. Lliguichushca
US Navy Veteran