For the past couple of years I have participated in Project 2996 -- a collaborative effort made by bloggers all over the world to remember and celebrate the lives of the 2996 people who lost their lives on Sept 11, 2001.
In the past two years I took some time to remember Raymond Meisenheimer and Deora Francis Bodley. (Click on the links of their names to read my posts about these two unique individuals)
This year, I'd like to remember David Reed Gamboa Brandhorst.
David was 3 years old when he and his two adoptive fathers Daniel Brandhorst and Ronald Gamboa lost their lives on United Flight 175. The family was returning from Boston to Los Angeles, where they lived.
Daniel Brandhorst was 41 years old and worked for Pricewaterhouse Coopers. Ronald Gamboa was 33 and managed a Gap store in Santa Monica.
David, their son, who was adopted in 1998, was named after Daniel's brother. The young lad shared both the spirit and intellectual curiosity of his two daddies.
Given the fact that society still hasn't properly accepted the fact that two people of the same sex can love and cherish each other, Daniel and Ronald had to not only overcome all the usual slings and arrows a couple overcomes to get together, but had to also overcome those extra hurdles thrown at them by society.
But they did it, and they did it successfully.
They also overcame the societal obstacles in their desire to be fathers, to unconditionally love a child. And by all accounts, they were wonderful fathers to young David, a bright, loving and curious child with a whole world of possibilities ahead of him.
I have shed tears thinking about the loss of David and his two fathers, but Project 2996 isn't about bemoaning a loss, it is about celebrating the lives of those lost of September 11, 2001.
Their triumph is proof that love reigns strong, that love can conquer all, and that love endures. Let this love they showed, to each other and to their beautiful little boy, be an example to the rest of us. And may we never forget that important lesson.
None of the victims will be forgotten so long as we remember them.