Safe in a Connecticut suburb — enjoying the fall weather, watching a kids' soccer game, working at a tidy office desk — the falling towers can seem long ago. It’s been 13 years.

So much has changed since Shelton awoke to blue skies on Sept. 11, 2001. That day brought wholesale death, world-changing shock. And Americans went to bed with fear, tears, terror and confusion.

Then followed wars — Afghanistan, Iraq. And terrorism metastasizing, with attacks in London, Madrid, Indonesia, Africa. Followed by the Arab spring, tumult and revolutions betrayed. Now beheadings.

The madness goes on.

A weary American knows that war is not always the best response, and there are no easy answers. Death begets death. But attacks and threats demand a response.

We stand together. We remember.