Lifestyle & Retirement / Simply Southern Cappy

It’s Personal

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President Obama said it: It’s personal.

His words resonated with me as though I was once again the young American Airlines flight attendant who walked each day from Copley Square back to my apartment on Beacon Street. Samuel Adams, Benjamin Franklin, John F. Kennedy and his brothers walked those same streets. They knew every sidewalk crack and how to avoid stepping on one.

The streets of Boston were personal to them.

When I learned on 9/11 that American Airlines Flight 11 was doomed shortly after the seat belt sign was turned off, I felt a deep kinship to those working that flight as though I was also on board. For a long time I had flown between Boston and Washington, so when the second AA plane, Flight 77, left Logan Airport and flew into the Pentagon it felt as if I were in the middle of a bad dream that was not going to fade upon awakening.

It was personal.

Last week as I watched chaos unfold in real time on the same streets that my feet had once trod, my heart broke bit by bit with each video frame. Although I have not lived in Boston for many years, while I was there the city embedded itself on my soul and became a part of me. I am trying to fathom why two misguided brothers turned my streets into a bloody battlefield. They were not patriots; they were not marathon runners; they were not celebrating Patriot’s Day with other residents of The Cradle of Liberty. They had not even lived long enough to bitch about the IRS. And yet, their hateful act was so unbelievably heinous that I will never be able to understand how they could do such a thing.

The attack was personal.

Normally, I write a humor column revealing the lighter side of life, but I am angry and bereft of humor today. Clever thoughts elude me. I can’t get beyond the question that continues to haunt every decent American: How could they do such a horrible thing?

I don’t run anymore unless I have to. Truth be told, I was never marathon material. At my age, I’m happy that I can still walk. But God willing on Patriot’s Day, 2014, I intend to be one of thousands standing on the streets of Boston even if I have to walk from Georgia. I won’t run in the race, obviously, but I will cheer loudly for those who do. In spite of what happened this year, my guess is that more runners than ever will participate in the marathon. What better way to deliver a Gotcha! to the ones who managed to break our hearts but can never break our spirit.

Boston is now personal to all of us.
Editor’s Note: Cappy Hall Rearick is a humor columnist for the Lowcountry Sun in Charleston, South Carolina. She is the author of seven published books. Visit her at


Cappy Hall Rearick was born in Orangeburg, South Carolina. She was an English major at the University of South Carolina and later became a Flight Attendant for American Airlines. Some years later, she moved to Los Angeles and then to Pennsylvania. In 1994, she returned to her beloved South to settle in St. Simon’s Island, Georgia with her husband Bill.

Cappy, an award winning short story writer and syndicated columnist, is the author ofseveral successful columns, including:ALIVE AND WELL IN HOLLYWOOD, TIDINGS, SIMPLY SOUTHERN and PUTTIN’ ON THE GRITZ monthly in the Lowcountry Sun Newspaper in Charleston, SC. She also writes an e-column called SIMPLY SOMETHING.

Cappy is past president of the Southeastern Writers Association. Her recently published novel, THE ROAD TO HELL IS SELDOM SEEN, a 2012 nominee for the Georgia Author of the Year, is available at print and can be downloaded and enjoyed at Kindle, Nook and all the electronic readers. Get ready to read and do nothing else because it’s a page-turner!

She is writing her next book, BRIDGING THE GAP, a psychological novel of deception and suspense. The SIMPLY books (SIMPLY SOUTHERN; SIMPLY SOUTHERN EASE; SIMPLY CHRISTMAS) are bound to make you laugh and maybe even tear up a little bit, especially if you enjoy remembering the good old days. With every page you turn, however, Cappy Hall Rearick will bring the South alive for you.

Rearick holds membership in the Georgia Writers, South Carolina Writers, Atlanta Writers Club, Florida Writers, North Carolina Writers and she is a sitting Board member of the Southeastern Writers Association.

In addition to writing, Cappy is a popular public speaker and can breathe new life into those good old days for your conference attendees. She is a dynamic creative writing instructor and is available to teach classes in column writing, Southern fiction, humor, memoir and short story writing. She brings forth fresh ideas to match her imaginative ways of turning a phrase. Book her now … and breathe new life into your next writer’s conference. Attendees will learn a lot, laugh a lot and go away itching to write better than ever.

If you would like to receive a monthly column of SIMPLY SOMETHING via email, send your request along with your email address to Cappy at: She will be delighted to add your name to the preferred column list.

Read Cappy’s BLOG at:

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