Sept. 11: A birthday, second day of work

Amelia Fields loved chocolate. Her husband of 26 years knew this and thought, what better way to make her 46th birthday special then a homemade chocolate cake to come home to?

Unfortunately, Amelia Fields never came home on Sept. 11.

After her second day on the job as a civilian worker for the Army at the Pentagon, she was among the 188 people listed as missing or killed in the terrorist attack.

“I still expect to see her come through that door,” said William Fields, her husband. “She’s going to be missed, we had a wonderful time together.”

On that Tuesday morning, William Fields pretended that he had forgotten his wife’s birthday, meanwhile sneaking a birthday card onto the steering wheel of her car so she could read it before she drove off to work from their Montclair home.

“She stood at the door before leaving and said ‘you have a happy day” and I said ‘you have a happy day too,” he said with a smile. “The only thing I have to remember was that morning.”

William and Amelia Fields met their junior year at Washington High School in Princess Anne, Maryland. High school sweethearts forever, the two vowed to spend the rest of their lives together in 1975.

After his first 16 years in the Marine Corps, moving to various corners of the world, leaving Amelia Fields to raise their two children, Shantell, 18, and William Jr., 23, William Fields gave his wife an award in 1989 for having the most important job — motherhood.

The plaque is shiny black with gold lettering, stating, “THE TOUGHEST JOB IN THE MARINE CORPS IS BEING MARRIED TO A MARINE.”

“She took care of the home front, I never had to worry about the kids,” he said. “I never heard a complaint.”

Amelia Fields and her family attended First Mount Zion Baptist Church in Dumfries where she was involved in church activities. “We helped the needy and delivered food to people,” William Fields said. “She knew how to treat people, with respect and dignity.”

“She was a lovable person, never had a problem smiling.”

Staff writer Louise Cannon can be reached at (703) 368-3101, Ext.123.

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