Wishing you and your families a beautiful holiday season filled with happiness, joy and wonderful wishes for the new year! Thank you for your ongoing support and kind words, they remain an ever-present gift to me.
I had the great pleasure of joining Katie Couric once again the other week! Since the beginning Katie has been a part of making a difference in my life. She didn’t just cover the story during the height of the tragic aftermath of 9.11, she has remained a part of my life and recovery always checking in and giving me the support and dignity so necessary to anyone going through difficult times.
How Lauren Manning Perseveres 12 Years After 9/11
Twelve years ago, as the world grappled watching the tragedy of the 9/11 attacks unfold; I endured a day that forever changed my life. When the fires blasted through the lobby of the north tower, seconds after the first plane was crashed into the building, I was engulfed in wall of flame and thousand-degree heat. I battled when it would have been far easier to yield to the pain and to simply let go, but I saw the face of my 10-month-old son and I vowed I wouldn’t leave him. Instead, I chose to fight and I decided to live.
When President Obama recently cited me regarding resilience—a tribute that took me completely by surprise—it was for my practicality at that moment rather than my eloquence. I was burned over more than 80 percent of my body, and the president quoted me saying, “That’s my reality. I put a Band-Aid on it, literally, and I move on.”
It was actually a lot more than a Band-Aid and it has been a fight that has lasted for years. I measured “moving on” back then in terms being able to inhale one second to the next. Almost no one thought I would survive and I couldn’t blame them as I lay in drug-induced coma for almost two months, my odds of survival lingering in the single digits. I remained in the hospital for more than half a year.
Enjoy the beauty in each moment and the moments of beauty that are everywhere in your life.
Remember, all you’ve got is time no matter how long or short so, take it!
Happy Father’s Day June, 2013.
I was privileged to accept this honor and to help raise funds on behalf of this world-renowned organization. In my acceptance speech I talked about the team effort necessary to succeed in almost any endeavor in life. The honor that I received is one I share with all those at Burke who worked to help me become whole again.
Burke Rehabilitation Hospital and Medical Research Institute is an acute rehabilitation hospital that has been in existence since 1915. They are a leader in medical rehabilitation, providing inpatient and outpatient care for a broad range of neurological, musculoskeletal, cardiac, and pulmonary disabilities caused by disease or injury. The primary, overriding goal of the Burke Medical Research Institute (BMRI) is to develop novel therapeutic approaches that give hope to the acutely and chronically disabled. A second, critical part of the mission of BMRI is to foster and cultivate a pool of talented young scientists, clinicians, and clinician-scientists who will lead the next generation in studies on repair and rehabilitation of the nervous system.
Many friends and supporters gave so generously to this magical, healing place that rebuilds people’s lives and helps create a path forward for them into the world once again!
I am proud to continue supporting this amazing organization that has been so dear to me. Here, volunteering on behalf of the Hurricane Sandy Relief efforts. The Relief Fund gave 10 million dollars away to families in need after this devastating disaster. Each recipient received a $1,000 credit card to help their family allocate the assistance as they best saw fit.
Founded in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, the Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund is unique in that it provides assistance directly to the people affected by these tragedies without intermediary or secondary organizational involvement. its scope from victims of terrorism to also include victims of natural disasters, and emergencies, including victims of Hurricane Sandy and wounded members of the U.S. military as well as supporting a wide variety of other charitable organizations.