It was a normal day in the office. That was until we heard the explosion outside in Tavistock Square.
I immediately knew it was a bomb. I went to the front door and saw metal confetti falling and the number 30 bus in pieces.
Being a nurse as well as a minister, I wondered what I could do.
We decided to open the office as a walk in centre, because people in the area were confused and didn’t know what to do. A police woman came along and asked if anyone could help. So I went with her and marshalled some of the walking wounded into safe places along outside of Tavistock Square.
I spent the rest of the day at the British Medical Association (BMA) comforting those who were very seriously injured.
People were numb and shocked by what had happened.
I talked with people that had seen things they really wish they hadn’t. One man recounted seeing a woman with no legs and how he couldn’t get the picture out of his mind.
There was a woman who had been upstairs on the bus and broken her clavicle. She said, ‘but I had an argument with my daughter this morning. What would have happened if I hadn’t survived? I shouldn’t argue with my daughter. I’m so lucky to be able to make things right.’
There was actually a great sense of order and calmness in dealing with the casualties at the BMA. There were doctors around and they could do what they do best.
I can still see images from the day, and I can still hear the sounds.
On the fourth anniversary of 7/7, I was doing some work with the United Reformed Church’s health and healing advisors. It was during that time that I was able to let go of a lot of the anger I had about what had happened. I was also able to recognise that while these things happen they are not indicative of a whole group of people. They are events that remind us of the importance of peace, relationship building, understanding, developing cohesion and bringing about reconciliation. To remain angry is very destructive.
I think we’ve actually come quite a long way since 7/7. The outcry that happened afterwards reminds us that it’s a minority that do these things, not the majority of a people or religion.
I think there has been movement of building bridges locally so people can stand together against such acts. This is a much more powerful message than wringing your hands and saying this is so terrible.
Take a moment today to step out of whatever you’re doing and give thanks we have a God who is about peace and comfort. We should take strength from the faith we hold and remember there is nothing, whether it’s a terrorist attack or an act of our own, that can separate us from the love of God.
Debbie was speaking to Premier’s Marcus Jones. For more on the 10th anniversary of the 7/7 bombings, listen in to Premier Radio's News Hour from 1-2pm.