Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. I could not stand before you today, this Ash Wednesday, without speaking of ashes and dust. I could not stand before you today, five months and two days after my brother, William Kelly Jr. was killed at the World Trade Center, without speaking of ashes and dust.
On the night of September 11th, just before midnight, I took the subway train into Manhattan. My mother had called several times throughout the day and evening, asking me to go look for my brother – to see if he was in a hospital, unconscious or unable to communicate. She was asking me for some sort of proof that Billy was okay, that he was alive and had somehow made it out of the Towers. So a friend and I arrived at Grand Central Station, now a ghost town. As we then walked from hospital to hospital, I could not help but notice the ashes and dust in the air. They were in my mouth, a bitter taste. They were in my lungs