Myrtle Beach, SC - MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) – The Polish President's death drew world-wide attention, but it also has special meaning for one Grand Strand woman.
Brenda Christy flew to Warsaw, Poland to visit some friends for the Easter holiday. She expected the trip to be a fun one, until on April 10 a plane carrying the president, his wife and 94 others crashed, killing everyone on board.
"Everything just went from a celebration to devastation and a tragedy and the mourning of loss," Christy said.
She says everyone was overcome with emotion so powerful it brought a bond even to strangers.
"You could see the emotion on their faces, the tears running down their cheeks," she said. "Then there was time of embracing each other and reassuring each other and often times of just pure silence with nothing but prayers going on."
"I was very grief stricken to see so many people and so many faces and everyone had the same look about their face and it was just heart-breaking," she said.
Christy was able to light a candle at the President's House and says it is an experience she will never forget.
"It was very moving, it moved me to tears to be a part of that and to just feel the presence of everyone that was in mourning."
She says the feeling of unrest in Poland reminds her of the U.S. after 9/11.
"I had the same feeling when I was over there in the midst of thousands grieving and mourning and in their state of unrest," she said. "I felt those same feelings when the planes went crashing into the World Trade Center."
Following the president's death, there was an outpouring of national support with Polish flags flying everywhere, many with the black stripe of mourning.
"Somebody had draped the Polish flag over Jesus carrying the cross, and that was outside of a church right in downtown Warsaw," she said. "It's like he is carrying the country right now."