The date of September 11 fills me with anxiety each year it comes around. I was watching CNN that morning and saw the planes hit the towers. As the first one crashed into the tower, I was surprised, dismayed and needless to say, shocked. I went into our bedroom where my husband was packing to go on a guy weekend with his best friend and said I thought planes weren't allowed to fly in NY. He didn't even look up, just said they're not. I told him what was happening and he followed me back into the living room where we were in time to see the next plane hit the other tower. Then dread filled my stomach as the realization dawned on me that this was a terrorist attack. You probably went through all those same emotions, too. I've heard some say that 9/11 is our generation's Pearl Harbor and that sentiment is most likely true. I haven't been able to watch any of the documentaries about it or read any books about it. It just hurts. Too. Much. I'm not a very social person; shy and uncomfortable in groups. But, I'm not anti-social either. The sights and sounds of that day will never leave me. I have searched each year for something to do that would make me feel better. This year I think I finally found it. Project 2996 They were looking for volunteers to write tributes for each of the victims of 9/11 to celebrate their lives and remember them. I didn't find their site until last week and wasn't notified until the beginning of this one, so I didn't get to do as much research as I would've liked to give Harry Glenn the tribute he deserves. I did a quick sketch (10 minutes) but I couldn't find a good clear picture and since I'm used to working from my own photographs or a live model, the sketch just doesn't do Mr. Glenn justice. But, next year will be different since I know where Project 2996 resides now. I would like to encourage everyone who reads this to please go to the Project 2996 site and please volunteer to write a tribute and post it on your blog next year. It's for a very good cause. And now, without further adieu, let me introduce Harry Glenn.
I did not know Harry Glenn personally, but after all my research, I wish I had. He seems to be a great guy. There are tribute pages all over the internet for Harry and I got lost reading the posts from people who obviously loved him and miss him terribly. But, this tribute is not about sadness or the loss of Harry. It's a celebration of his life and he lived it to the fullest.
Harry was a driven young man and I say that because he grew up in Harlem and lots of people didn't think he could come from there and go on to succeed in life as well as he did. His father, Roosevelt, tells the story of how Harry said he wanted to go to college and learn everything he could about computers, and he did. He set a goal and worked toward it and he achieved it.
Harry was the fourth of five boys and the pride of his family. He graduated from North Carolina Central University in Durham where he met his wife Sharon. Both of them graduated with degrees in business administration. After graduation, Harry and Sharon moved to Piscataway New Jersey and for the next 14 years he worked for AT&T earning senior management positions. He then took a position at Bankers Trust eventually moving on to consult for Sapient Corporation before working for Marsh & McLennan at the World Trade Center. He was assistant vice president in the global technology department.
But, Harry wasn't all work and no play. His wife, Sharon, says he wasn't just a good father to his own son, but a father figure to other children in the neighborhood.
This comment from Susan Burwell, who lived next to the Glenns for seven years is indicative of Harry's relationship with people. “He was a good person to everybody. He spoke to everybody, he was a very warm person.”
Harry Glenn cared about people, that's obvious. While at AT&T he volunteered in a black leadership mentoring program and participated in other mentoring programs throughout his career.
When I read that it took Harry's wife, Sharon, a week to tell their seven year old son, Jalen, that his father had passed away, it brought tears to my eyes. She had told him for several days that his father had been hurt very badly and that they needed to pray.
“God only takes angels,” she said of her 38 year old husband. “He was my hero and an angel... He was my best friend, my husband, my confidant, a great father.”
Because Harry was such a great father, Sharon knows that their son will have good memories for the rest of his life. She said Harry made sure that they did family things together.
Mr. Harry Glenn was survived by his parents, Birdie and Roosevelt Glenn Sr.; four brothers, James Glenn, Franklin Murray, Roosevelt Glenn Jr. and Donald Glenn; his paternal grandmother, Fannie Glenn Trapp of the Bronx, and his maternal grandmother, Bertha Murray. All of his family resides in NYC.
Harry had a full life, tragically cut short September 11, 2001. But, his family and friends will keep his memory alive. And so will some of us in the blogosphere, because Harry and all the other victims of September 11th should never be forgotten. We should remember them and celebrate their lives so their spirits will live on forever. God bless you, Harry, and keep you safe and warm.
Most of my information about Harry Glenn was gathered from previous tributes posted around the internet and the site Remember September 11, 2001, written by Alicia Grey.