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News-making events shape history, my life

Today is Sept. 11. Thirteen years ago, terrorists changed the course of history.

The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon along with the hijacking of United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania left an indelible mark on our lives.

Most of us can remember exactly where we were and what we doing when we first heard the news.

It was around 6 that morning when I turned on the television and saw what was happening. My husband was getting ready for work, and I had to get the kids ready for school. Our oldest daughter had just started kindergarten and the youngest was in preschool.

And me? For the first time in my career I didn’t have a job at a newspaper. It had been less than a month since we had moved to Nevada from Southern California, and I was lost.

The newspaper reporter in me instinctively knew this was a major event, something akin to John F. Kennedy’s assassination, Neil Armstrong’s walk on the moon and the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger. Yet, I had no newsroom to rush to, people to interview or stories to write.

I, like millions of others, was glued to the television coverage watching history unfold. I was a bystander, and it felt wrong.

I felt something similar earlier this week.

For days weather forecasters had been predicting massive storms and flooding in the area as the remnants of Hurricane Norbert passed this way. I knew this was going to be a big news story.

I had been watching the storm’s progress on radar and saw pictures of flooding and storm damage from friends still living in Southern California.

This time, however, I was prepared. I was in a newsroom, alert, ready and waiting for the raindrops to fall and the streets to overflow.

But here in Boulder City while the skies were gray the streets barely got damp.

I know it’s probably wrong of me to say, but I kept hoping for the skies overhead to open and create a deluge.

As the clouds grew darker, I waited and waited and waited. I began hearing news reports about hail and storms in the western part of the Las Vegas Valley. Streets were flooding, with some parts being washed away, and motorists were being stranded.

But here things were quiet.

Still, I clung to the notion that the big story would break soon as the flash flood and storm warnings were to continue into the evening hours.

Tuesday morning as I watched the local and national news on TV and saw the damage the storm caused, along with damaged caused by another storm on the East Coast, it reminded me of Sept. 11. Once again, I was lost.

This time the news had bypassed me.

Although I don’t wish for anyone to suffer through terrible disasters or misfortune, the adrenaline that comes with big news stories — whether good news or bad — is what feeds the soul of the journalist in me.

These stories shape my life and give me purpose. Without them I am adrift.

My passion for news flows through the pages of the Boulder City Review each week, where I hope the words inform, inspire and help you mark the momentous occasions in history.

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