Connect with us

Business News

Patriot’s Day bombing, Oklahoma City bombing, 9/11: my days after

In the aftermath of the Patriot’s Day bombing in Boston, there are many unseen victims that were never physically injured but will need help in the long run.



oklahoma city

oklahoma city bombing

What you may not know or understand – one perspective

Every April, I begin a period of mourning, and as April 19th approaches, the further down I go emotionally, and sometimes, it’s a calendar that catches my eye and reminds me of why I am depressed. It’s the truth. While I am technically not a survivor of the Oklahoma City bombing on April 19, 1995, I felt the earth move under my feet, and had I still been working for the company I had been in that same year, I would have been parking on the top floor of the three story underground parking structure below the building around 9am. That feeling of why life changes or job changes happen ahead of a tragedy that save you, I leave to God to answer, but the guilt I’ve felt over the years has increased.

I didn’t have the fortune of working in a specific office there, my early life career actually put me in 99 percent of the offices within the building on a daily basis. Needless to say, I knew many, many people that worked for various agencies within the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

At the time, the death toll was not something I would even consider or think about, rather, my job quickly became bringing the full weight of my current company to bear in delivering supplies to the crater, and the countless workers still trying to find survivors within the collapsed structure. Acting as a communications liaison between my company and the Red Cross, we were able to fulfill many of the immediate needs of the Red Cross, workers, volunteers, search dogs, and authorities – many heroes worked with us to facilitate the assistance, and I give all credit to those heroes along with so many other heroes that were doing the same in their own ways.

I was so amped and dove in head first so quickly, that looking back, it was obvious I was not going to allow the magnitude of the loss or the connection to possible victims to come near me – that lasted until the final delivery of supplies – a truckload of water delivered and stored at the Jerry Jones ministry warehouse around a week later in the middle of the night.

[pl_blockquote pull=”right” cite=”Live, Lightning Crashes”]
Oh now feel it, comin’
back again, like a rollin’
thunder chasing the wind.
Forces pullin’ from the
center of the earth
again, I can feel it.
[/pl_blockquote]It wasn’t until the next day in my office – I was listening to the radio, and the song Lightning Crashes by Live came on, mixed with the live coverage that happened immediately after the bombing.

It was quiet in my office, the phone wasn’t ringing, and I had no distractions. In the course of listening to maybe a minute of the song (not by personal choice, although I love the song) I began to weep, no, it was more like uncontrollable sobbing, and I couldn’t stop under my own power.

I sat down and reality hit me like a ton of bricks, and I wasn’t even there when the explosion came, and although I had visited the site a few times after the explosion, it was nothing compared to those who were actually there to witness the pancake collapse of the building, and the carnage that lay beneath. I didn’t have a scratch on my body, while so many were burned, crushed, and worse, so why was I crying?

I was just a kid then, and I had no idea what depression was, or what Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was, but as a young executive, I knew what I was feeling was the most powerful break I’d ever experienced – I could barely stand, and I shook.

Why am I telling this story now?

I watched 9/11 on television and like many, I witnessed in real time the second plane hit the building, but most of the aftermath was seen through smoke, and pictures, and I didn’t have the same personal connections in New York that I have with those in Boston this week, and while 9/11 has had an impact on me, both then and now, each attack has affected me differently based on how I personally connected to each.

The Patriot’s Day bombing comes in the same week as the 18th anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombing, so it was on my mind already when the first news reports of the Boston explosions broke. What I identify with is the feeling of confidence, purpose, and adrenaline in the eyes of witnesses and survivors, as well as the patriotism they’re feeling in the cities time of need – just like I did in 95.

In Boston, the first wave of victims are now stabilized, but the second wave is yet to come. 

Many have not had enough time yet to swallow the deadly pills delivered by the blasts in Boston. Their professionalism, their love, their faith, and the strength they’ve summoned that they didn’t know they had is carrying them now – from first responders, accidental first responders, children, medical personnel, police officers, to every day average citizens and visitors with connections to the Boston Marathon. They have yet to begin to truly feel the power of the change that has just disrupted their lives.

So many more will need support, so many more will need to be carried and lifted up, and so many more will be seeking help, but my worry is more about the folks who didn’t, haven’t, and won’t seek help, like me in ’95. It was family that watched me change, and it was family that supported me as I attempted to carry on like nothing had happened – I had a perpetual “what now?” feeling, and I needed to grab on to anything to make me forget, so I chose work.

Families that know anyone involved in this tragedy should watch their loved ones very closely, be there for them, be supportive, but most importantly, when the feeling of numbness begins to wear off, lead them to help. From my experience, it’s not something that any of my family could have coped with, rather, it was a complete and utter failure of my ability to control my own emotions and sadness, fear, and so many other problems I faced and still cope with today.

I cannot look at the list of dead, nor the list of survivors in Oklahoma City, nor can I bring myself to even visit the Memorial they’ve crafted in the hole in the Oklahoma skyline where the once Proud Alrefred P. Murrah Building stood. I’ve never even been back downtown – I just can’t. In fact, I moved a state away.

If families allow their loved ones to come to the breaking moment on their own, it’s better than picking at the wound, but at some point, when the “what now?” sets in, let it be the help they need, and their new focus to be on themselves.

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network for tech and entrepreneurs, proudly celebrating 10 years in publishing, recently ranked as the #5 startup in Austin. Before founding AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation and also acquired several other firms. His resume prior includes roles at Apple and Kroger Foods, specializing in marketing, communications, and technology integration. He is a recipient of the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), has built partnerships and bridges between tech recruiters and the best tech talent in the industry, and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular monthly networking events. Benn does not venture into the spotlight often, rather believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits, develops, and gives all credit to those he's empowered.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Business News

Amazon is extending its takeover to sportswear

(BUSINESS NEWS) As Amazon continues its quest for total retail dominance, they are beginning to try their hand with sportswear.



sportswear amazon

Because Amazon won’t settle until it controls every single market ever, the online retailing giant is, reportedly, gearing up to start offering its own sportswear line.

Rumors that the company might get into the workout gear game started circulating earlier this year when the company posted job listings for brand managers to help create “authentic activewear private label brands.”

They hired a brand manager for athletic wear in January.

Amazon has already been dabbling in the world of fashion, having created eight clothing brands since early last year, including a men’s shirt brand called Buttoned Down that is offered to Prime customers.

Insiders say that, while no long-term contracts have been signed so far, Amazon is negotiating with Makalot Industrials Co., a producer that makes sportswear for Gap, Uniqlo, and Kohl’s, as well as Eclat Textile Co., who provides textiles for Nike, Lululemon, and Under Armour.

Both Makalot and Eclat are based in Taiwan.

Apparently, these manufacturers are making small test batches for Amazon so they can run a trial on the concept. The fact that Amazon is working with experts in this market means they are serious about making a competitive, quality product.

Amazon currently sells about $10 billion worth of apparel, making it a serious competitor with brick-and-mortar retailers.

The workout wear market is a pretty big deal, so it would obviously be profitable if Amazon can come out with a good product. Customers are already crazy about Amazon’s online convenience and quick delivery, so they may be happy to find more options for sneakers and yoga pants.

On the other hand, private label brands that Amazon is already selling, such as Goodthreads and Lark & Ro may feel betrayed. Other sportswear brands can’t be too pleased either, with Nike reporting declines this quarter and Under Armour reducing its annual sales forecast.

Continue Reading

Business News

Ending a dismal year, Samsung says goodbye to CEO

(BUSINESS NEWS) Following a tumultuous year, Samsung now must face their CEO, Kwon Oh-hyun, stepping down.




Among exploding phones, recalled washing machines and an indicted former chairman, Samsung has had a rough year. Just as they start to get back on track, they have one more crisis to deal with.

Kwon Oh-hyun, Samsung CEO, has officially announced his departure.

In a letter to the employees, Kwon announced his plans to leave the company by March of next year. His words touch on all of the typical sentiments, like that he “had been thinking long and hard about (leaving) for quite some time,” and that he wants to “move on to the next chapter in his life.”

What Kwon doesn’t make clear are his exact reasons for leaving.

He mentions that Samsung is in an “unprecedented crisis inside and out,” without sharing any specifics. Via his own words, Samsung needs to reshape their company to keep up with the ever-changing IT industry.

Kwon believes that young, fresh leadership could be the answer that Samsung needs.

Though Kwon’s departure may seem like another hit for the company, it could be a new chapter for Samsung as well.

And it is a change they desperately need. Recently, Samsung has made the headlines with scandal after scandal.

Earlier this year, Jay Y. Lee, former Vice chairman, was found guilty on multiple charges of bribery. The charge, which Lee is now serving five years in prison for, also resulted in the impeachment of South Korean President Park Geun-hye.

Samsung also lived through two major recalls this year. They officially took the Galaxy Note 7 off of the market after various accusations of batteries overheating led to fires.

Samsung also recalled 2.8 million washing machines because their “violent vibrations” caused some users to be injured.

Major scandals like these are enough for any company to flop. However, Samsung is still in the game. Kwon’s letter calls for the company to start anew, which is exactly what they need to do to stay afloat.

Of course, creating devices that do not cause injuries and fires will be a start. In addition, new leadership will keep the company relevant and hopefully, revive their reputation.

Continue Reading

Business News

Identity-protecting roller stamps are a must for any office

(BUSINESS NEWS) Your identity is one of the most valuable things, that’s why Guard Your ID has created a stamp for when shredders won’t work.



ID stamp

The massive Equifax hack made nearly everyone feel vulnerable, but the truth is that every day we knowingly engage in activity that puts our privacy at risk.

Just think of how many times you give up your telephone number when signing up for a new magazine subscription. Or the numerous times you thoughtlessly threw away mail containing confidential information.

There are so many opportunities to accidentally reveal private information but luckily, there are an equal number of ways to prevent it. Though you may think that identity theft could never happen to you, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

Of the various tools invented to help you protect your identity, one of the newest is actually very simple. The company Guard Your ID has recently introduced privacy protection rollers and stamps. These gadgets are simple, quick and effective to help shield your identity on virtually anything.

The oil-based ink works on both glossy and non-glossy surfaces without smearing or rubbing off. These stamps work by creating an encrypted pattern which makes text unreadable.

Though shredding is another effective way to protect your identity, the rollers and stamps are more environmentally friendly. At some centers, shredded paper cannot be accepted as recyclable material. In addition, you can stamp more things that you can shred.

For example, you may want to cover up a label on a prescription bottle. The protection stamps are more versatile than shredding, and also more cost effective.

An Identity Protection Stamp can be purchased for under $20 and has a shelf life of 2-3 years. A wide format roller is also available for larger surfaces. In addition, refillable ink can be bought for the wide rollers.

It may seem like a nuisance to start stamping every label, bank statement and mail that contains any piece of private information on it, but in the end, it may be worth it. Just think of how much time you will spend freezing your accounts and recovering your identity if it is stolen.

It may seem silly, but today even a simple stamp goes a long way in protecting your identity.

Continue Reading

American Genius
News neatly in your inbox

Join thousands of AG fans and SUBSCRIBE to get business and tech news updates, breaking stories, and MORE!

Emerging Stories