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Where were you on 9/11?

  1. Sep 11, 2003 #1
    Remembering 9/11/2001

    This being the 2nd anniversary of the tragedy, I thought I'd start a post for people who wish to share thier experience of this tragedy. Hopefully this won't affect anyone personally, but I encourge you to share your remarks. this is the Kennedy assasination" of our generation, so you'll all no doubt have stark recollection of that day. Feel free to share any comments, remembrances, personal stories, or sentiments here.

    Myself, I was working that morning. I remember it quite distinctly, because I'd just come back inside, and was sitting at my desk working. I overheard people talking about a plane hitting a building in the the other room, so I went in there, and there was a radio giving a newsreport. At that point the details were sketchy, and I remeber thinking it a minor tragedy- Someone had no doubt lost control of a plane. Then news of the 2nd plane came in, and that shocked me. It was then I realized this was no mere coincidence. I frantically called friends and family telling them to get to a TV or radio. We had a single TV in a conference room that someone hooked up. The rest of my day was spent in shock. The 200 or so people in the building were crowded into the small conference room for the rest of the day. Hardly a word was spoken. When word came of the plane over philidelphia, it was first speculated that it was over cinncinati, and may be headed for detroit (my location at the time) I was thinking it was the beginnings of WW3. I was lucky. I had no one close to me in NY at the time, except for a a cousin, and I was able to confirm her whereabouts with a few calls. I vaguely remember the Columbia tragedy as a child, but 9/11 will stand out in my mind forever as the one day I will always remember above all others. (wedding and children's births aside).

    If this post is too sensitive a topic, I will understand if it gets deleted. But I feel tha sufficient time has passed.

    Last edited: Sep 11, 2003
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  3. Sep 11, 2003 #2


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    I was on a ship in port at the base in Pascagoula, MS. The captain called a meeting of all hands on the flight deck to announce it. It was surreal. We made preparations to get underway but didn't end up leaving for 5 days. We had just come back from deployment and half the ship was on leave. It took a few days to get everyone back. In the meantime no one was allowed to leave the ship and we tightened security and lit off our air search radar (an unusual thing in port as it can damage electronics from miles away). We took part in "Operation Southern Watch" which was monitoring air traffic along the Gulf Coast while the airspace was shut down.
  4. Sep 11, 2003 #3

    Ivan Seeking

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    I had just returned from a long trip. I sat on the couch and watched the TV for about three days.

    Last year I followed the path of a couple of the hijackers. At 5:00 AM I started in Providence, Rhode Island, flew to LaGuardia, and had about the same flight time out to Chicago on American Airlines as one of the crashed planes. It was a bit eerie. Notably, the planes were only filled to about 40% and security was a breeze- no waiting time!

    In Chicago I went outside and back in, and got all the way to the gate before anyone ever checked my ID. I raised hell with the Security manager who just looked at me like a deer caught in the headlights.
  5. Sep 11, 2003 #4
    It was my first week of college. I awoke seeing my roomate watching the tv. I asked what happened and he said a building was hit by a plane. Not interesting, but I remember it like it was yesterday.
  6. Sep 11, 2003 #5

    Tom Mattson

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    I was at my apartment, still in bed half asleep. The alarm was going off. I had it set on "radio" mode, and I was dozing in and out through the story. I remember hearing "The World Trade Center is gone. Both towers have fallen." The morning show on that particular radio station is renowned for their elaborate pranks, and I thought this was a joke. Thinking nothing of it, I shut off the alarm, made a bowl of cereal and turned on the TV to see what was on, and found out that it was no joke at all. I ran for the phone to call home, hoping that none of my family members were at the Sears Tower in Chicago. It sounds like an alarmist reaction now, but on that day no one knew how many planes were going to hit targets. It took me about 2 hours of continuous redialing to get through, no doubt because everyone in America had the same idea as me: to check up on "at-risk" loved ones. From then on, I spent every spare minute in front of a TV.
  7. Sep 11, 2003 #6
    I was at school. I had just gotten to my study hall class and our principal came on and said "We have assessed the situation and have confirmed that we are in no danger so classes will be held as scheduled"
    Didnt even tell us! So the teacher that had my study hall told us that two planes had hit the world trade center and- what had been thought at the moment- a bomb went off at the pentagon. Then we put the TV on and saw that not only 2 planes had hit the world trade center but a third hit the pentagon and a fourth hhad been crashed in pennsylvania! We were all in shock. I live in New York and I remember the line to give blood was a mile long. I remember the videos of kids riding their bikes away from the cloud that was coming up after the tower had fallen. I remember it all actually so I might as well stop with the examples...I dont think anyone could forget that.
  8. Sep 11, 2003 #7
    So you did this.. why? on purpose or a coincidence- or was this work related?
  9. Sep 11, 2003 #8

    Ivan Seeking

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    Just by chance. I had been working in New England for about three weeks and I tried my best to get home before the 11th but I didn't quite make it.

    As it turned out it was a great travel day. I expected security to be a big snag.

    Edit: There was one point on the flight from Chicago to Portland that I got a little nervous. There was a ~19 or 20 year old Middle Eastern looking man who began to pace the aisle. He looked rather anxious and kept looking at my laptop. This continued for about ten minutes and he was really starting to bother me. As you might have guessed, he had to go to the bathroom.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2003
  10. Sep 11, 2003 #9
    soon as i heard i got out a notebook. i actually documented my whole day... i guess i'm an opportunist, or a capatalist, but i figured if i documented it, it'd be in a book someday.

    i was in 2nd period, gov't/economics, and the social studies teacher from across the hall runs into the room and tells us a terrorist struck the wtc. the class got all excited, people started talking and getting loud, and meanwhile mr. wozmak was just trying to get back to class. the teacher ran into the room again after the second one hit, and also informed us that we were gonna try and find a tv with cable (i live in the the middle of nowhere...) again my teacher blew it off as just a distraction and tried getting back to work. finally she came in again, and told us they'd found a radio. mr wozmak tried telling her no, but we were all out the door before he could stop us.

    i can remember the whole so well, of course, more so since i wrote down all i could. i wrote about first seeing them on tv in math, then getting home and hearing my parents argue about politics. i even wrote down information as it came up on the news. i remember writing 'some bin laden guy did it they say' and having no idea who bin laden was. it seems real weird reading it now, but i'm so glad i wrote it all down. i'll remember it so much better now.
  11. Sep 11, 2003 #10


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    I was in Raleigh-Durham, NC (around 200 miles from the Pentagon, I think) attending a week-long course at Seimen’s training center. We had just gone down to their cafeteria during a break and saw a large crowd gathered around a television set. Grabbing a cuppa, I hurried over to see what was going on – just in time to see the second plane crash into the second tower. I started shaking so hard, my coffee sloshed out of my cup. I dashed outside to call home on my cell. During my explanation of what had happened, I heard and saw military jets screaming overhead (Fort Bragg was about 30 minutes away). Being fairly close to R-D Int’l Airport, overhead jets were commonly heard throughout the day. It was so eerie when all air traffic completely stopped after hearing all those military jets for about 15 minutes. It was only when I went back inside that I learned that the Pentagon had been hit, too.

    It seemed like the longest week of my life. I awoke extra early to watch CNN before going back to the training center each day, and stayed up WAY too late watching the same. Needless to say, we all had an extremely difficult time concentrating on what we were there to learn. I was fortunate, as I had rented a car to get around while I was there. Most of the other people there were not so lucky. Many called trying to rent cars to drive home, only to be told that there were none to be had. When my flight home was cancelled, with no idea of when flights would resume, I called Hertz and told them they could find their car at the Portland airport in about a week! They were so wonderful about it! All she said was “Have a safe trip!” I offered rides to anyone heading in that direction, but they all lived close enough to arrange other methods of getting home. I, on the other hand, ‘enjoyed’ an unexpected cross-country trip! It took me 5 days to get home to Oregon. The most surprising thing to me was the fact that, along Interstate 40, the main east/west route in the south, I was unable to get any kind of real news on any radio stations. But there was certainly a LOT of bible-thumping going on over the airwaves!! Slightly interesting for about 10 or 15 minutes – then I just turned off the radio and drove in silence and contemplation, enjoying the beautiful scenery. It was strange that I actually felt safer driving through very intense thunder and lightening storms in New Mexico (bolts flashing and hitting ALL AROUND me!) than I did 200 miles from the Pentagon while in North Carolina. Between the residual fear of more terrorist attacks and experiencing the awe and appreciating the beauty all around me as I drove, I came away with very strong emotions of being an American and what that really means in the world today. My sense of relief at arriving home was indescribable. It is something I will never forget as long as I live.
  12. Sep 12, 2003 #11
    i was sleeping at the time. my roommate who watches the news all the time woke me up, not something i was happy about just as america was waking up.

    and the depression that followed continues to this day. i so urgently wanted to return to my former life but i've given up on doing so.

    may your journey be graceful,
  13. Sep 12, 2003 #12
  14. Sep 13, 2003 #13
    I was in the library researching something whent he librarian came out and said a plane had struck the WTC. I just brushed it off as some idiot in a private plane. After a while, however, there were quite a few people crowding arounda Television in. It peaked my interest enough to watch for a second and as soon as I looked on, the first tower fell.
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