Mary Lou Hague's Mother Remembers September 11th

By: Shannon Houser Email
By: Shannon Houser Email

UPDATE: 9-11-11 4:30 P.M.

Ten years of remembering the tragic events that occurred on September 11th, and ten years since former Parkersburg resident, Mary Lou Hague lost her life.

Mary Lou's mother, Liza Adams remembers the tragic day. "It's hard to believe that 10 years ago we were sitting in front of that television, just glued to it. Watching every single thing, and now, 10 years, I just don't want anyone to forget."

Mrs. Adams remembers her daughter as the perfect child. "She was very active in all the schools she went to. Participated in whatever. She was a cheerleader and a red wing. Made straight A's. She was one of the valedictorians of her senior class."

And her success in her early years in Parkersburg, led her to a dream job working for a financial firm in the World Trade Center Towers.

"Keefe, Bruyette & Woods wanted to hire her permanently so she took the job and in 1998 she moved to New York City, and she was so excited. She loved the big apple."

It seemed like life couldn't get more perfect for Mary Lou, but on the morning of September 11th, 2001..."I received a phone call from her and it was a quarter of nine and she said mother turn on the television, we think a plane has flown into the other tower but she said all I can see is flames and flying papers."

Mrs. Adams told Mary Lou to get out of her 89th floor office in the second tower, immediately.
"She called me back and said, I have my cell phone, I have my purse I'm leaving now."

That was the last time a loving mother would talk to her 26 year old daughter, as the second plane crashed, 5 floors below Mary Lou's office.

"I don't know what happened to her. I don't know where she was. I got her cell phone bill the following month and she had made 6 calls to 9-1-1 starting at 20 after 9 and ending at 20 of 10, she had never connected."

After hours of anxiously watching the television and trying to contact her daughter, Mrs. Adams knew she wasn't going to have the chance to say goodbye.

"I had no idea the destruction. I had no idea that was happening. The only thing was I didn't hear from her, I didn't hear from her, and by 5:00 that afternoon when I didn't hear from her, I was sure I wouldn't hear from her."

In the weeks after the 9-11 attacks, a waiting game for Mrs. Adams and her family, followed by the first of yearly trips to New York City.

"We went right to New York and spent a week traveling from hospital to hospital, trying to see if she might be in the hospitals but she wasn't"

But the pain didn't hit right away, after realizing her daughter wouldn't be making the trip back to Parkersburg with her.

"You're so busy doing everything and trying to cover all the bases and trying to make sure you haven't missed something that you don't have time to worry about your own feelings. It was horrible seeing her apartment so empty, because she had left that morning thinking she would come back that evening, and she didn't come back. So that was pretty hard. We got back home and then it really starting to sink in what has happened and what was going on and it was devastating and heartbreaking, both"

For 10 years, Mrs. Adams and her family always remember to celebrate the life and memory of Mary Lou Hague.

"We still do celebrate her birthday. We don't ever let birthday go by that we don't celebrate and say happy birthday to her and miss her terribly."

Mrs. Adams has a collection of pictures and memorial pieces set up in her living room. "This is actually something I put up after 9/11 so that I would have pictures of Mary Lou at hand all the time."

And the family has made it their mission to not let others forget either.
"We have tried as a family to not focus on our own tragedy but to do things in the community to keep Mary Lou's memory alive. That's so important as a mother, you don't want anyone to forget"

Each year, PHS gives two scholarships to seniors in memory of Mary Lou, but that's not all.
"And we also made the two big circles of flowers in front of Parkersburg High School because I don't have a cemetery to put flowers, I thought it would be very fitting to go ahead and plant the flowers at the high school."

But on this 10 year anniversary, Mrs. Adams says she doesn't want it to be about the tragedy of Mary Lou and the devastation it caused her family.
"You realize that there are so many other things we need to be thankful for. September 11th isn't just about me. It's not just about Mary Lou or a tragedy in the family. It's about remembering those three thousand victims who gave their lives for our freedom and for all our soldiers that protect our freedom."

A freedom that was so quickly taken away by terrorists.

But Mrs. Adams feels our freedom has been restored with the death of Osama Bin Laden."When he was killed, it was a good feeling to know that we didn't have to worry about him, that we were in control again and that they boys has succeeded.they had tried so hard and worked so hard to get this accomplished and it was an accomplishment. So yes, I was very happy."

10 years of remembering. 10 years of celebrating the life of a bright young woman.
"I think I would probably tell Mary Lou, just as I tell her everyday, how proud of her I am, how brave she was and how much I love her and miss her.

______________________________________________________________
Mary Lou Hague was a Parkersburg High School graduate who moved to New York City to live her dream and ended up working in the World Trade Center Towers.

She tragically lost her life when working in the second tower ten years ago.

But as this anniversary approaches, Liza Adams, Mary Lou's mother says the day is about remembering all those who lost their lives.

"You realize that there are so many other things we need to be thankful for. September 11th isn't just about me. It's not just about Mary Lou or a tragedy in the family. It's about remembering those three thousand victims who gave their lives for our freedom and for all our soldiers that protect our freedom."

Mrs. Adams says her daughter's memory continues to live on and she's knows she's with her daily.

She says she does not want people to forget.

Be sure to watch our special September 11th coverage this Sunday from 6:30-7:30 for the full interview with Mary Lou Hague's mother.

Following will be live coverage from Wood County's September 11th celebration at Bicentennial Park.


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