I was 9 years old in 1958. My Mother sent me to the corner store when we lived in Tucson.
I think it was about $0.50......
I can remember it was still warm for a dessert-December late afternoon.
I can remember hearing Silent Night playing. I "think" it was in the store, but it may have been later that night on TV or something.
It was the "season" after all...
But the thing that I remember so vividly is the news of a fire at a Catholic school in Chicago.
We were Catholic. We were from Chicago. It was an elementary school. I was in elementary school.
90 children died in that fire. And 3 Nuns.
NINETY elementary school children. And Nuns.
We always thought they were invincible. But they died too.
The school was Our Lady of the Angels School.
As a result of the tragedy, ordinances to strengthen Chicago's fire code and new amendments to the State fire code were passed.
Also, the National Fire Protection Association estimated that hundreds of schools across the nation were safer because communities inaugurated and completed fire safety projects after the Our Lady of the Angels loss.
But that's just a blur every time I hear Silent Night.
Maybe I felt, as a child, the night WAS silent for those children. And for the Nuns....scary silent.
Never having another Christmas.
And the parents.....my heart still hurts.
What I need to remember, instead of the loss, is that one hundred sixty children were saved that day back in 1958.....
and who know how many others over the years.
And that is the miracle of Christmas - not just to remember lives lost... but the lives saved.
This year, when I hear Silent Night, I am going to try, TRY to remember the 90 angels and 3 Nuns..(angels to be certain) who are watching us, knowing that their lives were not lost in vain.....
And I will try not to cry.....