Fifteen years ago today, nearly 3,000 Americans were lost in a horrific terrorist attack launched against us by Osama bin Laden and his al-Qaeda network. Today, as with every 9/11 anniversary, we pray for the families of the victims, we remember our fellow citizens that were taken from us, and we stand united as a nation.
As we reflect, photographer Ben Sturner captured something incredible on September 8, a few days prior to the 15th anniversary of the attacks. Around 7:11 a.m., he captured a beam of light striking One World Trade Center. Is it a sign from heaven? A signal from those who were lost that they’re doing well on the other side? Well, that can be interpreted in many ways—and they’re all not wrong. Sturner said that he took the photo of this beam of light hitting One World Trade Center at the exact same spot he was standing on the Thursday before the attacks 15 years ago, according to ABC News:
Ben Sturner said he looks out at the World Trade Center from Long Island City in Queens each morning - and hasn't seen anything like he saw at 7:11 a.m. Thursday.
The self-professed amateur photographer described it as a "weird, reflective light." It was there for about 10 minutes.
At first, Sturner said he was reluctant to post his photo to social media because he was unsure how people would react to it, but ended up sharing it hours later. He thought it would help lift people's spirits.
He was in the same place at almost the same time as this year's capture - 7:57 a.m. on the Thursday before September 11.
Thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. Never forget. You can watch the 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony live here.