September 11th memorial thread...

in General Discussion edited January 2014
As the 2nd anniversary of the devastating attacks on America is days away, I find it only fitting to start a thread where people can share their stories, where they were when they heard about it, remember those we lost, how their lives have changed because of it, etc. None of us will ever forget that day, and my thoughts and prayers are with those who lost loved ones 2 years ago and those who are fighting to keep our great nation safe...We will remember...always

"Let's roll..."

-Todd M. Beamer "Hero" Flight 93


  • Reply 1 of 24
    My mom's birthday is September eleventh, so we try not to dwell on the attacks that much.
  • Reply 2 of 24
    scottscott Posts: 7,431member
    I was sleeping in that day. Couldn't figure out why Dan Rather was on Howard Stern. After listening for a while I figured it wasn't some Howard joke and thought I should turn on the TeeVee.
  • Reply 3 of 24
    I cant remember his name, but wasn there a guy who posted on here quite often killed in one of the buildings?(that was when I was a lurker)

  • Reply 4 of 24
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    was sick that day from work. while taking the dog out int he backyard to do her morning business, i overheard an upstairs neighbor talking to someone on the phone and what was "on TV." i turned it on CNN just minutes before the first tower fell.

    i can't even describe how i felt.
  • Reply 5 of 24
    bungebunge Posts: 7,329member
    I was at work and was brought into the kitchen by a coworker about two minutes before the second plane hit. When it did I turned to her and said we were about to make Afghanistan the 51st state.
  • Reply 6 of 24
    I was home, was layed off from work so was not working. I turned on news, and at the time they thought it was just a fire in the first buildind, they said some people had thought they say a plane hit the building, but didnt think that made much sense, then right on camera, second plane hits other building..
  • Reply 7 of 24
    lucaluca Posts: 3,833member
    I went to school and just minutes after classes began the principal got on the PA system and announced that a terrible tragedy had occurred at the World Trade Center in New York. The teacher turned on the TV and basically we all watched in shock as the even unfolded in front of us. By the end of the first period, everyone was pretty sure it was a terrorist attack, not an accident. Sometime in the middle of second or third period, the third plane hit the Pentagon and the towers collapsed. I really felt numb throughout the whole thing, it was just too big of a deal to wrap my brain around it. By the end of the day we were discussing what exactly happened, we had learned about the fourth plane, and there was actually speculation on if there was a fifth plane because of some confusion through the hasty reporting. I remember that whole week, especially the 11th and 12th, I was very afraid that there would be more attacks. It was the first and last time in my life that I felt very afraid of being killed by terrorism or a major armed conflict, and the first and last time I felt really, truly patriotic. That lasted for a few months, until about the middle of last year.
  • Reply 8 of 24
    i was at school in rochester, in class actually, when the first hit (probably the second too). i didn't find out until a while later, when a friend IM'd me. i thought he was kidding. he said checkout the news sites, so i tried, but they were all overburdened, so i thought my internet was down (which was odd, since aim was working). then i remembered that i have a t.v. i instantly thought it could be terrorism, but wanted to think it wasn't. i thought, "maybe some rabidly drunk pilot made an egregious error." but i couldn't believe that when i heard about the second plane (and the third and fourth). i was very scared for the rest of the day, cuz my family lives in a pretty tall building in manhattan. i thought whoever it was was going to start an arial attack, that it could've been the first attack on american soil since like the civil war or whatever. a bit overdramatic i suppose.

    my sister, back home, had a few friends over from Erin (thats Ireland to those who don't know). she has a perfect view of downtown from her window, and her friends woke up just before it happened. and perchance, we're admiring the view just in time to see. they really freaked out about the whole thing, she told me.
  • Reply 9 of 24
    applenutapplenut Posts: 5,768member
    I just copied and pasted from the thread last year since I didn't want to retype it, too much time and emotions

    phew... I'll never forget that day. Easily the worst day in my life.

    It was the 2nd full day of school. I was in English class. My English teacher is an old huge man, red faced. He's notorious for being an ass and one of the strictest most serious teachers I've ever had. I was in the front seat, 3rd row from door. About 9:15 or so, can't really remember, didn't look at the clock, principal gets on the PA system and announced that 2 planes have crashed over Manhattan and struck the World Trade Center. I'm at a loss of words to describe the reaction in the classroom. it was sort of like a collective gasp and then just an eerie silence. My principal sounded shaken up. He said they weren't sure what was going to happen and that if anyone may have family or friends in the towers to immediately come down to the library. He then said he would get back to us with more info as soon as he could. After he got off the whole class kind of just sat there and I could tell that everyone was just trying to imagine how massive this could possibly be, how this could possibly happen. My teacher, the guy notorius for being like an army general was nearly in tears. He said somewords but then just admitted he didn't know what to say and we said a prayer. Tried to continue with work but no one wanted to.

    Our principal told us we would continue with our usual schedule. So that class ended and we changed classes. The hallways were so strange. Everyone didn't know what was going on or what to do or what exactly happened. We got to our next class. We couldn't get any more info. The TV stations were knocked out. Internet sites were all jammed. We were left with a radio. Listening to WCBS AM. The descriptions that those reporters provided will last forever in my mind. Hearing of peopel jumping, the towers being sliced by commercial jets. the screams and the sirens. And we weren't able to see it so it was just left to our imaginations. Not every classroom has a radio so we went a few hours at a time without hearing anything. Throughout the day you'd here bits and pieces from kids in the halls and teachers. heard the pentagon was hit.. at that point I was scared shit because it was clearly no accident and a planned attack. Lunchroom was dead silent. After lunch we had religion class. He had a radio, and its that point that we heard the news of both towers collapsing and preliminary numbers of the dead and the numbers of firefighters missing. I'll never forget being in classroom with 30 17 year old boys and not one of them with a dry eye.

    After school I was stranded there. They had shut down buses, subways and bridges. I had to wait at my school until 6PM for the Throggs neck Bridge to reopen so my mother could come and get me. When I walked into the car we didn't even say anything. Just listened to the radio. Then we got to the bridge. I looked to my left and saw the familiar city skyline, and then all you could see is a huge black smoke cloud.... no towers.... this is the first time I saw anything of the disaster. My house has the same view of the city. And we were faced with the site of that black cloud... where the towers once were.

    Then I turned on the tv, we have satelite, and just watched in horror as they replayed the events of the day. It was nothing like I had imagined. it was horrible. Shortly after, my dad came home in tears, carrying a hand written list he and friends at the bar had compiled.... a list of people missing in the neighborhood.... it was about 14 long.

    I hope I never have to live through something like that again. It was torture. Maybe that's why I think anyone who makes jokes about that day or anything related to it is such an asshole. If you had to live through that and you had to go to your friend's father's funeral I don't think you would be making jokes about it.

    This is a picture of my friend's father. The first tower had collasped. And this is a picture of him walking into the 2nd tower. The last time anyone saw him.

    [ 09-02-2002: Message edited by: applenut ]</p>
  • Reply 10 of 24
    I was in the process of moving into a new apartment (on the Lower East Side of Manhattan). My girlfriend and I were staying at a vacationing friend's place in Brooklyn while some final renovations were being done. I was woken by a phonecall from said friend telling me to turn on the TV, and I saw the second tower fall five minutes later. I spent the rest of the morning on the phone / email making sure that everyone I knew was safe and letting other friends and family know that I was okay. I was lucky. I didn't know anyone who was injured or killed. I didn't grow up in NYC, so the absence of the Towers hasn't left the same hole in my life that it has for many of the people I know.

    I still become saddened and angry when I think about it. I think about the missing posters that appeared all over Washington Square Park, Union Square, and St. Vincent's Hospital: I can still remember some of the descriptions. I think about the guy my girlfriend met in a bar that afternoon, as she stopped to check CNN while walking to Brooklyn: His wife of four weeks had gone back to work at the WTC the previous day, her office was on the 106th floor and he was coming to terms with the fact that she had probably not made it out. I think about the twelve year old kid I know who saw the towers fall from her classroom window less than 30 blocks away. I think about the firefighters from the station on my block whose memorial I pass every morning on my way to work. I think about how all these people were killed by murdering cowards who saw fit to attack civilians. I think about how the deaths have been appropriated and used by liars to further political agendas unconnected to terrorism. I think about how more death and misery has been - and will continue to be - the result of these actions and pretty soon I have to force myself to start thinking about something else.
  • Reply 11 of 24
    I was working just outside of NYC and my fiancee (she's my wife now, so you know this has a happy ending) was working in an office building on 17th street.

    When I got into work I heard on the radio that there were reports of a plane hitting the WTC. I pictured some stupid pilot flying a small private plane and knicking the side of the building.

    So as soon as my wife got into work I sent her an IM asking if she saw anything. She said it was on fire!

    We had a TV in that office in the lunch room so I went there and turned it on. A few other people came in to see what was happening and just as we were watching the first tower burning the second one was hit! We all thought it was just a replay of the first one, then we realized we were watching it all happen live.

    So my wife ended up going on the roof of her building with her coworkers to see what was going on. At this point we were hearing all crazy kinds of things. Like the capital was burning or there were some other reported fires in DC. Then we heard about other planes still flying around and they were missing. At this point my wife and her coworkers decided it was a good idea to leave the city.....

    For the next 5 hours I didn't hear from my wife. The last thing was her saying goodbye on IM and that she'd call me when she got to the train station. We lived in Westchester County so I picked her up from the train station everyday. I couldn't reach her on the cell phone and I had no idea where she was. Then I heard that all the trains and subways were shut down. So now I really panicked because if she wasn't at the office and the trains were shut down, where was she?

    At some point in there I went home from work. I don't even remember the drive home. I just remember telling my boss that I didn't hear from my wife and I wanted to be home to meet her. While I was home I got a few phone calls from my wife's friends, all of which were worried about her. That didn't help!

    5 hours later she finally got through to me from her boss's apartment. Her boss took a few of her employees that lived outside the city back to her apartment when she heard the subways were closed.

    I felt somewhat at ease that my wife was ok but I still had this uneasy feeling that something else could happen. I think it was at this point that the whole reality of the situation finally sunk know that... "holy f I can't believe I'm upset about what happened to me when so many more people are far worse off". All I could do at that point was watch the TV and cry for all those people that suffered. A few hours later they opened the Metro North line and my wife came home. That was the best hug ever.

    My wife told me that the walk to the train was really strange. 1000s of people all marching up the street in silence. Like it was a death march. Like it was the end of the world. Than the silence was broken by a fighter jet screaming over the streets. I can't even imagine what that felt like.
  • Reply 12 of 24

    Originally posted by The General

    I was home, was layed off from work so was not working. I turned on news, and at the time they thought it was just a fire in the first buildind, they said some people had thought they say a plane hit the building, but didnt think that made much sense, then right on camera, second plane hits other building..

    Same with me. 2001 started out as a great year for me. Had a great job, went to London in after that I was laid off. Then unemployment...then 9|11. Been downhill since...

    I must give out my thoughts to the survivors of 9|11. They have been living this everyday since...and I know nothing in my life can compare to their loss and pain...

    I was walking home from work today and couldn't help noticing how much the weather was exactly like this 2 years ago. Sunny, clear and crisp. Why did those assholes have to ruin such a beautiful day/experience?

  • Reply 13 of 24
    lucaluca Posts: 3,833member
    I remember my mom telling me she was woken up in the middle of the night that night by fighter jets flying overhead. She said it really scared her... because she knew that they were escorting one of the flights that was in the air at the time, and she knew that the escort was there only to ensure that if hijackers took over the plane, they would shoot it down.

    It sends chills down my spine every time I think of it. I don't even remember crying while the attacks were happening, I was so deeply affected that I couldn't.
  • Reply 14 of 24
    northgatenorthgate Posts: 4,461member
    I had just got laid off from my cushy IT consulting job a week earlier. My phone rang at 6:45AM PST and I knew, if the phone rings that early it's not good news. My friend said to turn on the TV. I did.

    At that point, I knew I was going to be unemployed for a LONG time. I didn't get a job for almost two years after that.
  • Reply 15 of 24
    Mostly copied and pasted from last year's thread:

    I was asleep. I didn't wake up until about 1:00 or so. Just about everybody was dead by then. I checked my email. A friend had sent me something: "This is one of those things. I think we seriously underestimate the mentality of terrorists. I also think that these people seriously underestimate how this action will effect us. I think it will have the exact opposite effect. People are not going to get scared. They are going to get pissed beyond all recognition." I didn't know what he was talking about but I needed to take a leak. I'd find out soon enough.

    Another friend had left a couple of messages on the answering machine - if I was awake I needed to turn on the TV. "There's some awful, crazy stuff that's happening." He didn't know it then but maybe he already suspected it: his cousin was in one of the towers. He was a bond trader at Cantor Fitzgerald.

    I was on my way to the bathroom and my roommate told me that we had lost the World Trade Towers. It sounded crazy. I thought he was exaggerating. The TV was on...

    After a little while I went outside. It was such a beautiful September day here in Connecticut. I'd been in the city just a week before - the Sunday before Labor Day. Then, just as perfect a day too - warm with a coolness in the morning that promised autumn just around the corner. New York never looked so spectacular to me that Sunday and now this. Hell had crossed over into this plane of existence a little more than an hour away. I felt guilty because here everything seemed so normal. I live on a busy street. Cars were going past. I wondered if there was even one of them didn't have the radio turned to the terrible news...

    Strange how much the world can change while one dreams.
  • Reply 16 of 24
    bungebunge Posts: 7,329member

    Originally posted by zaphod_beeblebrox

    Strange how much the world can change while one dreams.

    Don't worry. The world doesn't change, we do.
  • Reply 17 of 24
    aries 1baries 1b Posts: 1,009member
    I watched it on TV in a conference room filled with engineers. The first building was on fire and then the second plane hit-the accident scenario died right then, we knew that it was a terrorist attack. Bunch of smart people confronted by something outside of their experience; standing/sitting there stupefied. I stated that this would change everything, that the government would be shooting airliners out of the sky over Washington if they flew the wrong way. Another engineer said that I was crazy, that they'd never shoot an airliner down over Washington - look at what it would land on (people).

    Then the debate started about whether the buildings would stand. Materials, thermal stresses, anything to not face squarely what we were seeing. I stated that those two buildings together had the capacity to hold my entire home town. Then I remembered a former girl friend who lived in New York City. She had shown me the WTC (I touched the gleaming steel of one of the towers and got vertigo looking up the side of it - magnificent. It felt powerful.). I didn't know if she worked at the WTC or not. Then the buildings came down and I thought of my whole home town dying in front of my eyes. Management entered the conference room and evicted us.

    Staggered back to the cubical. Internet was jammed. No answer at her phone. Found out she worked five blocks away; she's fine. A lot of the people who live around her had lots of friends who died.

    Went outside to lunch after all the airliners were ordered to land and, for the first time in 18 years of working at the same place and seeing contrails criss-crossing the sky, the sky was empty.

    What else could possibly, so forcefully, convey to an aerospace industry engineer the depth of what was happening? The planes were gone from the sky. The Dark Ages were reaching out of their grave and trying to pull us back to a pre-technological, savage existance. The shock ended and I got firm. I got lunch and I went back to work.

    I continued working on Special Forces/USMC programs. For the next week, after work, after the wife and kids were abed, I watched the coverage of the search for survivors, of the New Yorkers desperately searching for loved ones, the endless seas of missing people posters,of Americans redicovering the value and values of America, and I cried. I cried for the whole damned week.

    We've delivered 'stuff' ahead of schedule. We will continue to do so until every last one of the terrorist sons of bitches are dead. It's the Enlightenment against the Dark Ages. We will not compromise, we will prevail.

    PS: That day, during lunch, in my car, driving out of the Burger King drive-through, I was (no kidding) caught between a pistol-toting bank guard and a fleeing in a gray car bank robber. The bank guard missed the bank robber. He also missed me and my car, although I don't see how.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    Working at a financial institution, doing desktop work with a co-worker. His cellphone rang, his wife told him, he told me, I immediately pulled up and saw the first tower with a huge hole in it. Was rather amazed and thought about the airplane that hit the Empire State Building in the 30s(?) and how there was minimum loss of life.

    The TV in the break room was on, and people kept popping their heads in to see what was up. Like everyone else, it wasn't till the second plane hit that the mood changed from rubbernecker-at-a-traffic-accident to one of "What the hell is going on?" Nobody could really get any work done and we were sent home anyway around lunchtime for security reasons.

    I ended up calling everyone I knew who would be asleep to ask if they were watching, and got in touch with some folks I hadn't spoken to in months. That night, at the bar, of course it was the only thing on TV, and pretty well for the next couple of night nothing was normal in terms of any media. Very subdued conversations and people bouncing off each other what the heard earlier in the day (like that bit about eight planes hijacked).

    Definitely left a profound impression and made me think how safe we are (were?) compared to those places that experience and worry about such things on a daily basis (although not with that many casualities at once). Quite a wake-up call to have it hit so close to home.
  • Reply 19 of 24
    giaguaragiaguara Posts: 2,724member
    September 11, 1973.

    The democratic government of Salvador Allende is torn down, and Augusto Pinochet starts his dictature.

    That day the military airplanes bombed the presidential palace with an impressive precision. In the following terror thousands of people died (were killed). Many other simply disappeared, became "desaparecidos". In all the country concentration camps and torture roooms were built, and public execution became common. The dead became buried in mineral caves and in graves (?) without the stone. For seventeen years, the Chilean people lived in the fear that someone would come to knock their door at midnight, with the fear of becoming one day "desaparecidos", being suddenly arrested and horribly tortured.

    Still today the guilty are free and have not been made pay for what they have done.

    Commemorative 11th September.

    More about Pinochet.

    -edit:link added.
  • Reply 20 of 24
    i had taken my oldest son to his first preschool, the first time i had done it.

    i came home and all hell was breaking loose, i saw the glint of the plane on the live shot and knew that instant that our world was changing, or maybe we were finally no longer exempt.

    i went back to pick him up and i had a lot of mixed feelings, here he was, kind of starting his way into the world and i thought my god what have i (and your mum) got you into!

    the other eerie thing is you can see the sears tower from our house and his school and i kept checking to make sure........

    the next day i had a doctors appointment in a building about a block from the john hancock building, and as i was walking by, i just kind of stopped and looked up and tried, but still could not fathom something so big coming fast
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