i believe everyone should hold on close to the poeple and things they have

nikki - seal beach, California
Entered on March 17, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: gratitude
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

This I Believe

I believe people should hold on close to the people and things they have.

We could feel the ground underneath our feet shake, our whole house rumble and windows clatter. Little did me and my family know we were in for a gloomy surprise.

Four summers ago in 2005 there was a fatal plane crash in the neighborhood that I live in. I remember, while I was getting ready in the bathroom and my parents were in the kitchen making French toast, a loud roaring sound that awakened the rest of the neighborhood, the sound got louder and finally a loud crash and boom. My mom and dad rushed to get me and we peeked outside. The whole street rushed to their doors and hurried outside to see what the commotion was about. I remember everyone in their pajamas frantically telling their story of what they thought had happened and what had fallen from the sky, no one expected a plane.

Behind my house, one street over on Harvard, there was a house engulfed in huge flames and black smoke. A small, one person plane had crashed a couple houses away, and the pilot had died at the scene and the owners of the house weren’t there. Luckily, they were on a walk, but solemnly came back to find their house in ashes; they lost everything but each other. Throughout the whole day residents of the neighborhood were confined to their houses because of all the ambulance and fire trucks entering and leaving the area, congesting the entrance. Everything in the little neighborhood of College Park West changed on that clear sunny summer day in 2005.

The owners of the house rummaged through the little that they had and saved essentials that weren’t ruined. The house was rebuilt within the next two years. Even the smallest sound of an airplane never goes unnoticed anymore, and neighbors always reminisce about that memorable day. Every time an airplane goes by I get scared and can’t help but think about the possibility of it crashing and incredibly hitting my house, I imagine going through the troubles that couple went through, and I hold my family close.

Over the next few days within the crash I realized how much I would miss something I lost such as my house or a family member. I had come to appreciate the things and people that surround me more. That little green house changed my outlook on life.