iOS app Android app

Lillie Leonardi
GET UPDATES FROM Lillie Leonardi
Following her 25-year career of service in law enforcement, Lillie Leonardi is pursuing her lifelong passion for writing.

From 1998 to 2010, Lillie Leonardi was employed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Pittsburgh Division, as its Community Outreach Specialist. Leonardi’s work and research focused on violence prevention. She also served as a training instructor under the auspices of the United States Attorney’s Office, Western District of Pennsylvania.
On September 11, 2001, immediately following the crash of Flight 93 in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Leonardi was deployed to the crash site, where she would spend the next 12 days. During that time, she was tasked to serve as the primary liaison with law enforcement, government, and human service entities, including the United Airlines humanitarian response team. She also assisted in the coordination of the two memorial services.

Post 9/11, Leonardi represented the FBI in collaboration on three projects relating to Flight 93: with the Smithsonian Institute, with the Senator John Heinz History Center, and with the Flight 93 Oral History Project, coordinated by the Department of the Interior.

Prior to her career with the FBI, in 1984, Leonardi was appointed to serve as the first female police officer with the city of Arnold, Pennsylvania. While employed with the police department, she specialized in crime prevention and investigations of crimes against children.

Lillie is the author of "In the Shadow of a Badge" (Hay House).

Entries by Lillie Leonardi

The Power of Prayer

(2) Comments | Posted August 31, 2014 | 12:28 PM

"Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one's weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart." -- Mahatma Gandhi

For all too long I have pondered the question, "What is my purpose?" ...

Read Post

Let There Be Peace

(0) Comments | Posted August 5, 2014 | 11:44 PM

" Let there be peace on earth
And let it begin with me.
Let there be peace on earth
The peace that was meant to be.
With God as our father
Brothers all are we.
Let me walk with my brother
In perfect...

Read Post


(0) Comments | Posted May 7, 2014 | 3:59 PM

"The greatest glory in living
lies not in never falling,
but in rising every time we fall." 
~ Nelson Mandela 

Resilience is defined as the ability to become strong, healthy, or successful again after something detrimental happens. In recent weeks, our nation once again witnessed the renewal...

Read Post

The Genesis of Writing

(0) Comments | Posted February 19, 2014 | 1:00 PM

Click here to watch the TEDTalk that inspired this post.

When recollecting the origins of my writing, I am reminded of the 16-year-old teenager who wrote her first poem on the eve of her daughter's birth.

There, seated on the hospital bed awaiting the chance...

Read Post

Learning to Let Go

(1) Comments | Posted January 29, 2014 | 4:50 PM

"In the process of letting go you will lose many things from the past, but you will find yourself."  -- Deepak Chopra

"In every life, a little rain must fall," an old adage that seems of late to apply to my family.  Over the past weeks, the collective group has suffered...

Read Post

What Christmas Means to Me

(0) Comments | Posted December 19, 2013 | 9:55 AM

"Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful." -- Norman Vincent Peale

Growing up in a home overrun by nine siblings allowed for moments of great revelry.  The hours spent with each other, sharing in the times at rest and at play,...

Read Post

Giving Thanks

(0) Comments | Posted November 30, 2013 | 2:58 PM

"Life without thankfulness is devoid of love and passion.  Hope without thankfulness is lacking in fine perception.  Faith without thankfulness lacks strength and fortitude.  Every virtue divorced from thankfulness is maimed and limps along the spiritual road."  -- John Henry Jowett

As a child, I was taught the importance of...

Read Post

Memories Light the Corners of My Mind

(1) Comments | Posted October 23, 2013 | 2:29 PM

"A dad is a son's first hero and a daughter's first love."
-Author Unknown

Today would have been my dear old dad's 90th birthday. I awoke this morning with him on my mind. Initially, I felt sad remembering his passing, but it was not long before the sadness dissipated. The melancholy...

Read Post

The Burden of Responsibility

(0) Comments | Posted September 16, 2013 | 7:05 PM

Over these past months, I have been afforded opportunities to take part in numerous newspaper and radio interviews.  All have pertained to the story of 9/11 and the post days of recovery.  These conversations enabled me to share my thoughts and voice my beliefs.  Additionally, they have allowed me to discuss the plight of the first responders, who...

Read Post

Lasting Impressions

(0) Comments | Posted August 15, 2013 | 6:56 PM

In recent days, I had the occasion to return to Shanksville, Pennsylvania, to attend a first responders meeting with representatives from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Initially, I was quite apprehensive about doing so. For more than a week, I changed my mind several times and even sought the...

Read Post

Healing Touches: The Hug Theory

(2) Comments | Posted July 9, 2013 | 11:40 AM

"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch,
a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment,
or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around."
-- Dr. Leo F. Buscaglia

Read Post

Reconciling an Irreconcilable Past

(0) Comments | Posted June 10, 2013 | 5:05 PM

When my ex-husband became very ill recently, I received a telephone call from my daughter.  She was on her way to the hospital to be by his side in the emergency room.  Her voice was so filled with fear that it prompted my heart to immediately respond -- a response...

Read Post

The Power of One

(0) Comments | Posted May 19, 2013 | 11:19 AM

Throughout the tumultuous history of our nation, the power of one man's or one woman's voice has permeated across the land and inspired others to bring about change to improve the quality of life for the masses. Historians have documented the influence of men like Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Martin...

Read Post

In the Line of Fire

(0) Comments | Posted April 23, 2013 | 7:13 PM

In the early onset stages of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), flashbacks were a common occurrence in my daily life. They were a constant reminder of what I saw, what I heard and what I smelled. Any similar prop that presented itself caused the prompting of the distant memory to...

Read Post

When the Memories Fade

(0) Comments | Posted April 17, 2013 | 1:13 PM

When the memories fade from the mind of a loved one, it is a dismal situation to witness and experience. The initial glimmers of the destructive path to the brain's once vibrant mechanism bring about a sense of great loss and agony for all involved. The individual who has been...

Read Post

Keeping the Scales Tipped at Happiness

(1) Comments | Posted March 22, 2013 | 1:32 PM

When I contemplate individuals in my life who have the right to be bitter, my maternal aunt is the first person who immediately comes to mind. In the span of her lifetime, she has lost two husbands and her only son. Her first husband passed away when she was nine...

Read Post


(0) Comments | Posted March 7, 2013 | 3:15 PM

Changing careers in midlife is not an easy transition for anyone -- especially once you've hit the over-50 classification and acquired your first AARP card. Prior to the arrival of the big 5-0, it was a subject I gave little thought to or worried about. That is, until my world...

Read Post