View Full Version : 9/11: What Do You Remember?

09-08-2008, 03:25 PM

I read this article (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/07/nyregion/thecity/07fati.html?ex=1378526400&en=0bffe86a28891ae8&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink) and it got me thinking more about 9/11/2001. What do you remember?

Here is what I remember...

- I remember it was beautiful sunny day with bright blue skies
- I remember being told of the first plane hitting the WTC at work from someone listening to Howard Stern
- I remember believing it was Cessna
- I remember racing to a PC to find out more information once told of a second plane.
- I remember the panic of my wife when told of the events because her sister was in NYC on a business trip.
- I remember my sister in-law's struggle to get out of the city and come home.
- I remember searching any news site to get some bit of information.
- I remember co-workers walking around with a look of horror, sadness or shock on their faces.
- I remember feeling angry and scared that night.
- I remember not wanting to have children because "why would I want to bring them into this world."
- I remember people debating whether or not sporting events should be cancelled at a time when so many were mourning.
- I remember watching countless hours of TV coverage.
- I remember the passengers on those planes whenever I hear "I'm Already There" by Lonestar.
- I remember the sound of the plane.
- I remember every time I hear a plane fly over.

09-08-2008, 03:34 PM
I was kayaking in a swamp that day. On the way out before putting in, I heard something on the radio about a plane hitting the WTC. On the way home, later in the day I got the rest of the story.

So, that day I remember alligators, swamp mallow, resting on rice field levees built by slaves 240 years ago.

I remember the dissonance of being in such a peaceful place all day while our country was in turmoil.

09-08-2008, 03:37 PM
Here is what I remember...

- I remember it was beautiful sunny day with bright blue skies
- I remember being told of the first plane hitting the WTC at work from someone listening to Howard Stern
- I remember believing it was Cessna

Same here.

Also remember

* Talking about nothing other than 911 events and the details available at the time while on the sales calls I made that day

* Sitting in the hotel lobby with co-workers watching TV in disbeliefe that night

* Playing in a golf outing the next day and feling weird about playing golf while such serrious events unfolded

* Hearing a weather siren go off while on the golf coruse the next day and everybody looking at each-other and (without saying it) thinking "oh lord, now what?".

Now I can't really think about 911 without getting mad. Just plain mad.

09-08-2008, 03:38 PM
You have a good list and I remember a lot of that...

I remember hooking my portable radio up to my PC Speakers and listening to WLW's reports on it, and everyone huddled around my cube to try and hear.
I remember us struggling to get a picture in one of the conference room TV's and seeing the second plane hit.
I remember our company's CEO being totally TICKED off that we were paying so much attention to something that was happening in New York and not our work.
I remember the aftermath and our company taking a huge financial hit, and eventual collapse, cause major investor money was tied up in the towers/companies there.

09-08-2008, 03:42 PM
I remember the look of dread on my math teacher's face.
I remember my principal coming over the PA system with the news.
I remember a room full of kids, not yet anywhere close to maturity, sitting quietly for an hour plus in chemistry, watching the news. Tears running down our faces, hearts in our throats, not sure what was going to happen next to a country we loved.
I remember the fear of some involved who had family at Wright Pat Air Force Base

09-08-2008, 03:45 PM
-It's my Mom's birthday
-I had fallen asleep with the news on and woke up groggily thinking I had somehow changed the channel to a Tom Clancy movie
-Email friend in New York to see if they were OK
-Walking around numb

I thought a lot about an experience I had years ago. I flew from Tokyo to London on the day the IRA resumed their campaign against the Brits (late '90s I think. edit, nope, it was 1994 (http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=980CEEDC133DF937A25750C0A9629582 60).) My friends and I were having lunch somewhere near Chinatown and the police came through the area getting everyone out of the restaurants because they'd gotten reports of a bomb planted in the area. We got the hell out and legged it...away.

They found a pipe bomb in a mailbox about 10' from where we were sitting.


09-08-2008, 03:46 PM
I remember sitting at my desk on the 41st floor of a building in midtown Manhattanat 8:45 a.m.. It was a stunningly beautiful morning.

I remember hearing a plane fly over that sounded low. The shadow of the plane crossed over MSG as I looked out my window (western exposure). I commented to my coworker that the plane sounded low, but we saw planes, helicopters, etc. fly around Manhattan all the time and thought nothing of it.

A couple minutes later, a worker from the southern side of the building (w/a view of the towers) came down and told us that a plane hit the one of the towers. We were under the impression that it was a small plane, like a corporate jet.

We watched the rest of the events unfold. I saw the second jet hit and both towers fall.

I remember trying to get out of town. All routes to NJ (ferries, tunnels, trains) were suspended.

There was a crowd outside Grand Central. Police weren't letting people in because there were bomb threats.

I walked about 40 blocks to a co-workers appartment on the upper-east side. I was able to call family from my cellphone. F16s flew over occasionally. Rumors of other planes were abundant.

Around 3 p.m., I heard Grand Central was open. I walked outside to hail a cab. It was a ghost town. Nobody on the street. An off-duty cab picked me up and took me to Grand Central. I bought a ticket, but they didn't collect tickets on the train. I still have it. I went to Westchester County, NY and met a family member who drove me back to NJ.

09-08-2008, 04:15 PM
I remember:

-the principle announcing it over the PA and my teacher running out of the rooming crying and screaming

-not being allowed to watch it unfold on TV

-being 11 years old and thinking the WTC was the NYSE

-touring NYC two days earlier after seeing Ohio State in the Kickoff Classic against Miami (FL)

09-08-2008, 04:17 PM
I was in my 9th grade science class at the time. We turned the TV on just in time to see the first tower collapse.

09-08-2008, 04:49 PM
From my post count I'm an obvious lurker, but on that day I got most of my information from users right here on Redszone.
The major news web sites were so slammed - you couldn't get a page to load or it took forever (I was at work, so no TV or even radio).

I'll always remember Redszone for that.

Johnny Footstool
09-08-2008, 05:17 PM
-I remember taking my car in for service, and having a technician tell me "a plane hit the World Trade Center, and President Bush is going there now." I remembered stories of planes crashing into the Empire State Building on foggy days, and thought this was just another one of those accidents.

-I remember watching the smoldering towers on TV in the auto dealer's waiting room, and hearing Ted Koppel say, "Well, clearly this isn't accurate, but we've just received a report that one of the towers has collapsed. But as you can see from the video feed..." Then the first tower collapsed as we watched.

-I remember hearing former NYC mayor Ed Koch ranting and raving on the radio like a lunatic, wanting to fire nukes at every country that had ever looked at us cross-eyed.

-I remember driving home and seeing the ridiculously long lines for gas, and thinking, you idiots, gas will still be there tomorrow. We'll still have food and shelter. The sun will still come up.

09-08-2008, 05:37 PM
Like everyone else I remember where I was and I remember the raw emotions. But more than anything else, I remember the sonic boom late in the afternoon in the south Dayton Area. To this day I can still feel the beat my heart skipped, and I can still sense the few seconds of sheer panic that went through me right after.

09-08-2008, 06:08 PM
I remember Creek and JaxRed breaking the news here, and flipping on the tv in my office and watching it unfold. Phone ringing off the hook, uncertainty, and knowing that our world just changed for the worse.

09-08-2008, 06:16 PM
I remember being on a Beech King Air when the first tower was struck.

I remember feeling like a "sitting duck" in my company's plane as we were stranded in the middle of the general aviation runway in Jacksonville. FL.

I remember that we had just landed that morning and were trying to talk with tower in order to get taxi clearance to the GA terminal. When they bothered to answer us, all they would say was that there was a "gate hold" in Washington, DC that was causing domino-like delays at some of the major East coast airports.

I remember getting a call from my wife on my cellphone while we were in the middle of the runway; telling me that a "small plane" had collided with the WTC.

I remember hustling to the Hertz rental car desk to grab my (prearranged) rental car. It was at that point, when I heard the clerk say that the "Pentagon was just bombed."

I remember the look on the rental car agent's face when she repeated the announcement that the FAA had just grounded ALL flights over the USA.

I remember her response when I asked her how the FAA could do such a thing that fast. She said, "I don't think that they can. It has never happened before...."

I remember jumping in the rental car and hauling ass away from the airport...This meant driving a few hundred miles west of Jacksonville listening to the day's horror on the radio. My meeting, which was scheduled to be held in a Florida DOT building, was obviously cancelled.

I remember that the first visual images of the Twin Towers collapse that I witnessed came in an Applebee's Restaurant about 1:00pm that afternoon.

I remember being angry at the bartender for his flippant comments about the images. Of course, he had watched them for several hours and I was viewing them for the first time.

09-08-2008, 06:28 PM
I remember a post about it written by letsgojunior. I'd provide a link, but I can't find it.

09-08-2008, 06:50 PM
I too first believed it was a small aircraft that struck the tower. Then wondering how on earth a jetliner could have made such an error. Of course, the real truth was horrifying.

My oldest daughter had just started her first year at Dayton and worrying about her. I knew that while all commercial traffic was grounded, that planes would be flying in and out of Wright Patterson.

My wife had gone to an employment seminar that morning and she didn't know until around lunch time when one of the other participants came in late and told them. She didn't fully understand the gravity of the situation until she got home.

My son was still in grade school and the school chose not to inform the kids, so they didn't know until they got home.

09-08-2008, 06:56 PM
Work stopped at our office. We sat watching the news coverage, before we told everyone they could go home, before noon. I felt numb.

09-08-2008, 06:57 PM
I remember a post about it written by letsgojunior. I'd provide a link, but I can't find it.

Yeah, her dad works in Manhattan and watched the whole thing from his office window, IIRC.

09-08-2008, 07:19 PM
I remember coming home and being greeted by my brother at the door. He told me to go in the living room, where they had CNN on.

I remember watching the replay of the plane hitting the second tower, and just hoping that people made it out before it fell.

09-08-2008, 07:21 PM
I was sitting in school that day.

09-08-2008, 07:29 PM
I was in 8th grade. I had come back from the bathroom and saw that everyone in the class had eyes glued to the tv, which I thought was very odd. Then it came out what had happened. And the teacher allowed us to watch and follow it because she felt it was important. I speculated with my friends who would have done such a thing.

And from that point the staff tried to make it seem as normal a day as possible. And sent us to our next classes. At that point, my older sister came and took me out of class to go home early because she was worried. We drove home and the whole way I looked out the car windows with paranoid eyes toward the skies, which seemed disturbingly empty since I happen to live within minutes of the Columbus Airport.

I watched tv pretty much the rest of the night following all the coverage.

09-08-2008, 07:35 PM
I remember a comment I heard on the radio. A retired airforce pilot was being interviewed and he talked about walking the streets in DC that day and looking up. He said, "I looked up and I saw fighter jets and realized, my god, we are flying cover for the capital."

That was a clarifying moment for me, understanding the level of fear that existed in the nation's government at that point.

09-08-2008, 07:45 PM
----I remember it being a cloudless, beautiful day here in Columbus, OH.
----As someone stated earlier, I too first heard the news on the Howard Stern show, they originally just chalked it up to somone flying a small plane into the first tower and couldnt believe someone would make such a mistake on such a sunny day.
----I remember hearing about the second tower being hit as the bus I rode took me into work.
----I remember being glued to the TV at work and my boss crying and telling me about an hour and half into the coverage to turn it off; she "couldnt take it anymore". (I refused).
----I remember leaving work early and actually stopping to get a haircut on the way home...it was amazing hearing all the rumors and speculation amongst patrons and the staff while I was there. (The coverage they were watching showed replays of the second tower collapsing---they continued to think it was other towers being destroyed live.)

In the days after, I will never forget the paranoia and fear that engulfed myself and others---the cringing whenever you would hear something in the sky; false alarms in Downtown Columbus---City Center Mall and the Rhodes Tower were evacuated on separate occasions during the next few days. I also remember the uncertainity of whether we should go back to work; when would it be ok to return to our normal way of life??

The other lasting memory I have is of a memorial service that was held at Ohio Stadium about a week later----sitting there somberly with about 20,000 others just trying to pay our respects and make sense of it all.

09-08-2008, 07:59 PM
Does anyone else remember reports of a truck bomb outside of the State Department?

09-08-2008, 08:25 PM
But more than anything else, I remember the sonic boom late in the afternoon in the south Dayton Area. To this day I can still feel the beat my heart skipped, and I can still sense the few seconds of sheer panic that went through me right after.

Holy crap, yes. And I don't know about "few seconds." I mean, a few seconds of actual panic, but the confusion and nervousness lasted a good half hour, as I recall.

Channel 7 was even cutting into the national CBS feed to talk about it, and briefly perpetuated a story about a bombing at a VA Hospital or something, and then clouded the story further with details of a brush fire that might be a downed aircraft, and for at LEAST 30 minutes nobody freaking knew what was going on.

Turned out -- in the end -- it was just Air Force One's security escort making an unauthorized jump to warp speed over a populated area.... but man alive did that brief period of confusion take a memorable day and make it even more so.

Other memories:

* Having my bedroom door pounded upon at what (at that time in my life) seemed the unreasonable hour of 10:30am. I wanted none of it. Then the phrase "It's war. They attacked us. They got us." made it through to my brain enough to spark me awake. And then spark me to wonder "Wait? Who's they? Who's us?", which led directly to....

* Watching way too much TV for about 3 days straight, surrounded by my housemates and various visitors (hey, we had the big screen TV, and we had the bar in our basement, it was only natural to congregate) who'd only return to their own residences between the hours of midnight and 10am. Otherwise: communal TV viewing and brainstorming.

* Trying to put on a brave face and do some "normal" things right afterwards, but having it all feel very weird. I remember going out to our favorite bar the very Tuesday night (well, Wednesday morning by the time we got there) it happened, and thinking "there's way too many people here for it to be this quiet." Also that night: let's just say I'm not a "hugger" (I subscribe to the Seinfeld theory that outside of a sexual relationship, there are some things that are just stupid and pointless, and awkward public physical interaction with a vague acquaintance is one of them).... but if you were a dude and you wanted to do that stupid "half-handshake, then pull it in to bump shoulders and pat each other on the back" deal, I didn't mind that night. And ladies needing a nice long hug? I was open for business. Really weird. For me anyway.

* Then, finally, I think I did get the feeling of "normal" back about 4 days later. The Friday of that week. It was a combination of things, but mostly, it was a realization that the world WAS continuing, and almost as before, and that it'd be really lame to continue feeling so out of sorts when the truth is this really was a small and petty act ring-leadered by one small and petty wannabe tyrant and his even smaller and pettier henchmen. He doesn't deserve the distinction of putting me out of sorts, he doesn't have the stroke to change the direction of a nation, much less the world. Of course, things have changed, but I think my overall catharsis that Friday was the right basic idea: don't give the bad guys too much credit, and instead put that mental energy into appreciating how life around you is quickly bouncing back to the way it always was.


09-08-2008, 08:41 PM
Does anyone else remember reports of a truck bomb outside of the State Department?Here's a link to a good article on that. I found it pretty interesting.


It may be a little biased though.

09-08-2008, 08:50 PM
I remember watching the 2nd tower collapse from across the Hudson at my office in Jersey City. Everyone just got the hell out of Dodge at that point.

It was a very surreal experience. No one knew what was going on. But when the second one went down, it was time to go.

09-08-2008, 10:19 PM
Here's a link to a good article on that. I found it pretty interesting.


It may be a little biased though.

Thanks. I hadn't thought of the report until this thread.

09-08-2008, 10:27 PM
Holy crap, yes. And I don't know about "few seconds." I mean, a few seconds of actual panic, but the confusion and nervousness lasted a good half hour, as I recall.

Turned out -- in the end -- it was just Air Force One's security escort making an unauthorized jump to warp speed over a populated area.... but man alive did that brief period of confusion take a memorable day and make it even more so.

The sonic boom heard over the Dayton area was from a pair (I think) of vipers out of Springfield. As you mentioned, they were in full blower to meet up with Air Force One. One of the pilots who scrambled that day is a co-worker of mine. The details of that sortie are rather haunting in that he went from living his normal life to doing "whatever necessary" to protecting that 747 in a matter of a few minutes.

I don't remember hearing the sonic boom.

A few weeks later, I was playing the sectionals golf tournament at a course in Springfield when I saw a four-ship of vipers scramble. All I could think about was "Oh no, here we go again."

I found out about the events on this website (I was a junior in high school and working on a chemistry project). Like most, I thought that it probably wasn't any more serious than the plane that crashed into the Empire State Building. Five minutes later, my class was ushered across the hall into another classroom where there was a TV. When the second tower fell, it was obvious (at least to me) that the events were an act of war and that Bin Ladin was probably behind them. It was just a few weeks before that we discussed how Al Qaida "declared war" against the US and how funny we all thought it was.

When lunch came, everybody reluctantly got their food but nobody ate more than a few bites. Nobody spoke other than our principal who came up to us and told us to be sure to remember the date.

That afternoon, the local paper interviewed a few of us students and asked us about the prospect of a draft. I think most of us had already begun preparing ourselves mentally for the inevitable call. I also remember a female classmate asking what a 767 was. I've always been an aviation nut and could visually ID any airliner since I was probably the age of 7. I gave her a quick description of the plane in a very crass tone (wish I could have had a redo on that one).

09-08-2008, 10:47 PM
Driving to Wrigley when I still lived in Kentucky, hearing the games were cancelled and being so friggin mad. The reality of the situation had not been relayed well on radio, and I was just shocked beyond belief when I got home after turning around.

09-08-2008, 10:52 PM
It was the one day I didn't watch any TV or listen to Radio while I ate breakfast and got ready for work. When I got to there, everybody was talking about the planes and whatnot, and I had no Idea what they were talking about. The rest of the day we were glues to the TV. I'll never forget that day.

wally post
09-08-2008, 11:26 PM
I was florida - doing a music tour. phone call woke me: "Billy, I'm sorry but you have to get up. They're attacking your city".

Calling my wife and reaching her was powerful. She said it was a war zone and was trying to find some friends. I think she walked a LOT that day finding some pals - and not finding others. Mostly, I wanted to post to show my avatar, which needs to change (admittedly. I feel bad subjecting you all to it when I post).
But I DO miss the WTC. It was a fun place to take relatives from out of state for a bevy and snack and incredible sunset view of the greatest city in the world.

I have police friends (drummers) who worked the site for months and months afterward - overtime. LOTs of hours overtime. They have yet to receive their pay for their work. My hope is their health holds up as the years pass. Many have experienced sickness and death as a result of working at Ground Zero - a sight that our government declared safe.

09-08-2008, 11:31 PM
I remember being in English class and hearing people talk about how it was a bomb and all that jazz. I remember coming home and turning on the news for the first time in my life.

09-08-2008, 11:50 PM
I remember hearing it on the radio as I drove to work very early....I remember the exact spot on the street I was driving. I had meeting downtown at the Hilton Hotel, and everyone was pretty freaked out about being in a tall building.

The hotel I worked at had housed many United crews (40 ppl). Many of them had good friends that were on the planes, many had flown with them very recently.

They were stranded for nearly a week, and hardly heard a thing from United. Just a helpless feeling. Then they were told they could get back on a plane....a whole new round of panic ensued.

Roy Tucker
09-09-2008, 08:37 AM
I was on a job interview that day. It was the kind where you go into a conference room and people keep coming in to interview you.

About 9 am, one guy said "have you heard what's going on?" and then he told me about the first plane. I remember talking about a Tom Clancy book where a 747 hit the Capitol building. And then as the morning went on, each person said "have you heard what's going on?". By about 11 am, chaos was setting in and they said "that's enough, we'll call you".

I got into my car and turned on WLW who were replaying the radio reports of the falling of the 2 towers. I remember sitting there for 15 minutes or so, just in shock as to what had transpired.

We went to a cross-denominational outdoor church service at Heritage Park that evening in Mason. Everyone had candles. I'd never seen such a large group of people be so quiet.

My kids were pretty shook up. All the schools had gone into lock-down. As I put each one to bed that night, they all wanted to talk about what happened. Each of them asked "why did they do this to us? what did we do?". I didn't have very good answers.

09-09-2008, 09:18 AM
But I DO miss the WTC. It was a fun place to take relatives from out of state for a bevy and snack and incredible sunset view of the greatest city in the world.

Going to NYC years later, and working where you could see the area, seeing the crater and the chain link around it, looking at the buildings that were being repaired, still seeing pock marks in the ones near there, and being in a meeting where you looked out into ground zero are still haunting memories.

09-09-2008, 10:57 AM
I was on a job interview that day. It was the kind where you go into a conference room and people keep coming in to interview you.

About 9 am, one guy said "have you heard what's going on?" and then he told me about the first plane. I remember talking about a Tom Clancy book where a 747 hit the Capitol building. And then as the morning went on, each person said "have you heard what's going on?". By about 11 am, chaos was setting in and they said "that's enough, we'll call you".Okay Roy, I gotta ask...

What happened with the job?

Roy Tucker
09-09-2008, 11:10 AM
Okay Roy, I gotta ask...

What happened with the job?

Actually, I got a job offer out of it, partly because they said they liked how I handled all the confusion of the interview.

But I was coming out of a start-up (chaos++) so I declined it and took another more stable job.

09-09-2008, 12:33 PM
Actually, I got a job offer out of it, partly because they said they liked how I handled all the confusion of the interview.

But I was coming out of a start-up (chaos++) so I declined it and took another more stable job.Thanks, I was just curious....

09-09-2008, 01:11 PM
I also remember a trip I had to NYC in 1999. It was a class trip with my 8th grade class, and we were able to visit the Empire State Building, but were only able to drive by the WTC. I remember thinking to myself, "When I come back, I'll make sure to stop there." I remember thinking on that day that there would be no stopping by to see the WTC. Upon going back to NYC in 2005, I remember looking at the skyline, feeling absolutely sick to my stomach.

I remember trying to picture what it must be like for the people that were there. I remember visualizing what if there was another school on a trip, and what if they were driving by that tower when that plane hit? Or worse, what if they were inside of the tower, sight seeing?

So many thoughts of horror ran through my head for weeks. What a surreal moment in life, one I hope I never experience again.

09-09-2008, 01:48 PM
I was living in Colorado at the time, commuting from Canon City to Colorado Springs every morning for work. I was going in that morning at 7:30, which would have been 9:30 our time, and I was driving by Fort Carson shortly after 7:00 when the morning host on the radio came on after a song finished playing to say that a small plane had hit the World Trade Center. She said she was going to try to find more information and then went to a commercial break. Coming back from the break she said it appeared to be more than just a small plane, and by that time I was at work. I got into the office and someone had a tv on. I got there just in time to see the second plane hit.

There wasn't much work done that day. We all just sat at our desks kind of numb and looking at the internet. Then someone set up a tv in the lunch room and most of us spent the rest of the day in there. When the towers fell, I just stared at the tv in disbelief. The numbness gave way to sadness, and then anger. Going outside was kind of strange as well. The whole town was just so quiet, except for the sound of the fighters flying overhead. They just kept circling over the city.

Other things I remember are the military wives I worked with. Most of them were putting up a brave front over the days ahead, but they were also scared as one by one they came into work to tell us their husbands were shipping out. I also remember conversations I had with a Muslim co-worker from Bangladesh. He was just as angry as the rest of us, but he was also scared that he might be targeted by folks who were angry at middle eastern people. We had a few good discussions at lunch time over the next month.

For the most part, that day was one of overwhelming numbness. I had just been married ten days earlier, so I was still a giddy lovestruck newlywed, and then this happened. I got home from work that evening and my wife and I just held each other for a while. We didn't even say anything because it didn't seem there were words to do justice to how we felt.

Caveat Emperor
09-09-2008, 01:54 PM
I was in my second year at Tulane.

I remember waking up for a morning class (Industrial Organization Psychology) and walking out of my dorm room -- someone in the hallway told me that the World Trade Center had been hit by an airplane. I ducked back into my room to flip on CNN and watch some of the coverage before class (being on time for class was never a high priority for me). As I was watching, I saw the second plane hit the other building. I ran off to class only to find that it had been dismissed and classes were cancelled.

I spent the rest of the day (and night) watching news coverage.

Honestly, the memory of 9/11 that sticks out in my mind the most was the fact that EVERY cable channel went to news. It was 24/7 coverage of the attacks, sadness, impromptu memorials, speeches by leaders, analysts trying to understand what had happened. It was almost overwhelming. The first channel I remember that went back to regular programming was the Cartoon Network, who started showing old Looney Tunes at some ungodly late hour. I remember my suitemates and I flipped over to that and we both laughed like maniacs at stuff we hadn't seen or taken seriously since we were in grade school. We all just needed a break from the unrelenting storm of death and sorrow that had filled the TVs since the attacks had happened.

Man, I can't believe it's been 7 years...

09-09-2008, 02:53 PM
I remember driving from my apartment in Toledo to a class in Bowling Green listening to Bob & Tom and them saying something about a plane crashing into the first tower, kind of like it was a personal plane or something, nothing like what it turned out to be. I remember then going into my international business class and finding out our teacher wouldn't let us turn the tv on to see what had happened as I don't think the info had come out yet that it was an actual attack.

I had to wait 90 minutes until the class ended and we could turn the tv on to see what happened. Don't remember if the first tower had come down yet or not, but I ended up going into work after that and not actually doing any as everyone was glued to tv screens and whatever news site they could get up...

I also remember panicking a little as some of my coworkers were flying that day to Dallas, but were stuck on the runway (never took off) and not knowing what had happened to them for a while...

09-09-2008, 07:00 PM
I on vacation for my job at the time at United Airlines, at a hotel in Flagstaff, getting ready to drive down to Phoenix and catch a plane home. I had just watched a documentary on HBO about Ali and Frazier and, switching channels, caught the folks on Good Morning America (which I never watched) talking about what they said was a small plane hitting the World Trade Center. I watched them talking and saw the second plane hit live. It was surreal.

My first thought was that there had been a nuclear explosion that caused the planes to crash. This was silly, but I was trying to rationalize what I had seen. Then it became obvious that something was going on.

We actually began the drive to Phoenix thinking our plane would leave. Denial, I guess. Difficulty coping with reality. When we realized it wouldn't, we tried to keep the car, but they wouldn't let us. We did manage to get a hotel near Sky Harbor.

Meanwhile, relatives at home were panicking. For some reason, it took people a while to reach us, and they didn't know if we were in the air yet.

Two days later we found an available rental car and drove cross country. I could have waited and got a free ticket home, but I couldn't handle flying then (I would fly again just over a year later). Budget charged us $666 for the one-way rental from Phoenix to Charleston, WV.

The whole experience was dream-like, being stranded in a strange city, travelling on the mostly empty roads, with everyone talking about the same thing, everyone wondering, trying to find the right words.

And considering my job, getting back to work was hardly a return to normalcy. Many of us wondered whether we had helped people book one of those two flights. Not a realistic thought perhaps, but there was something that made us all feel as if we'd been targeted specifically, since we worked for United Airlines.

A strange time.

09-09-2008, 07:48 PM
I remember my wife waking me up and telling me I'd better come see something. I got up just in time to see the second plane hit. Then I thought of a trip I had made to NYC back in the early '90s. I remember eating lunch at the Sbarros below the WTC and then going up to the WTC observation deck. All I could think about were those people trapped above the fire.

09-09-2008, 09:21 PM
I'm a 3rd shifter, so I came home and went to bed. Only to wake up later that afternoon to the wife watching the TV and wondering what in the heck was going on. I was totally in shock.

09-09-2008, 10:09 PM
If you want to hear something pretty messed up, I interviewed for a job with a company that was located on the 103rd floor (I think, or somewhere thereabouts) in one of the towers less than a year before 9/11. I actually accepted the position but renegged and took the counteroffer my then-current job offered me.

Why did I do it? I have no idea. The only real reason was that I didn't feel like switching jobs and filling out all the paperwork. I actually accepted less money. Kind of weird.

It didn't really hit me until a short while after everything went on that I was almost in that building. The company was pretty much decimated.

09-10-2008, 05:29 PM
I know this is long, but I have so many feelings surrounding that day that I started typing (and typing) and it felt good. It's sort of therapeutic and I almost need it somehow documented because I don't want these feelings to ever be forgotten.

The first time I flew in a plane was in August of 1993. I was in route to St. Martin in the Caribbean for a family vacation. Being my first plane ride, I was just as excited to fly on the plane as I was for the trip to the tropical paradise. I made sure I took a window seat and, lucky for me, it was a perfect day to take in the view. We had to stop in Newark, NJ on the way. Upon landing there I remember looking out my window as the plane was heading towards our gate and seeing the two towers of the World Trade Center for the very first time with my own eyes. What a beautiful sight. I had always been fascinated with tall buildings and loved drawing the World Trade Center, Empire State building, Sears Tower, etc. as a kid. I also loved King Kong and it was on those towers that he climbed at the end of the 1976 version of that movie. I was five years old, but I remember the King Kong movie poster, with him crushing a helicopter in one hand while holding the girl in the other as he straddled the two towers. It was such an awesome visual image for me as a little boy. As we took off to head south from Newark, I got another great view of the towers as our plane rose. There was a kind of magic the whole image held over me. I knew someday I would be back there.

While on this vacation I met a girl on the beach who was from New York. A town called Valley Stream on Long Island. You know, where Snapple is from. Anyway, we fell in love right there in St. Martin and it was the beginning of a pretty serious long-distance relationship. Not long after I had gotten back to Ohio, I talked a buddy into driving to Valley Stream with me to visit her. The night before, my buddy and I had attended the Washington-Ohio State game. It was the first night game in the Horseshoe and we were pretty exhausted, but we were excited to get to New York. As we were approaching the city in the the early morning, we had somehow missed a sign somewhere on the NJ turnpike or whatever and instead of bypassing NYC and going around it (to get to Long Island) we found ourselves heading for the Holland Tunnel, going straight into mid-town Manhattan. I had studied maps before the trip so I pretty much knew where all the main landmarks were (in relation to each other), but once we got into mid-town, all bets were off and being the first time either of us had been to NY, we were a little freaked out. Anyway, we made a few turns and then saw a sign that said "Yankee Stadium". I knew we didn't want to go that way (the Bronx), so I looked around and what do I see, but the World Trade Center behind me. It was like they stood there like two lighthouses showing us the way. I knew from the maps that they were on the the southern most tip of Manhattan, so we turned around and followed them south and finally found our way across the bridge onto the Long Island Express to Valley Stream. I'll never forget the feeling I had when looking at those towers that night. It was like they were calling us.

The next day, we took the train into the city. The first place we stopped was Wall Street, to visit my girlfriend's best friend who worked in the financial district. After a brief visit, we decided to venture to the World Trade Center. I remember standing in the plaza and being overwhelmed at the sheer size of these two massive structures. I knew I looked like a tourist in my wonderment, but I didn't care. We sat by the globe sculpture in the center of the plaza and even took a picture there, before entering the South Tower. As we were heading up the elevator to the top, I remember thinking about the terrorist attack earlier that year, where a bomb had exploded underneath the building. Once on top, I forgot about that scary thought and was like a little kid taking in the sights on all four sides. To the east you could see New Jersey and the planes landing at the airport where I took my first trip. To the north, I could see the north tower on the left and the rest of Manhattan straight in front of me. The north tower's antenna reached into the sky, hundreds of feet higher than we already were. It looked so close that I felt like if I reached out I could touch it. Straight ahead toward mid-town, the Empire State Building stood there as if to say "Look at me, I'm pretty cool too" and seeing it with all the other buildings surrounding it made me think of the ending credits in All in the Family, where they would show the footage of the New York skyline. To the east, the Brooklyn and George Washington bridges looked so small as they connected the island we were on to the boroughs. Queens and Brooklyn were on the other side, with Valley Stream way out in the distance. And to the south, the Statue of Liberty looked like a tiny toy figurine hovering above the water. You could see for miles and miles on this September day and everything was so crystal clear. I couldn't imagine a better day to fully appreciate this view. I took dozens of pictures from every angle. I could have stayed up there for hours appreciating the view, but I was finally pulled out by my buddy and girlfriend and we headed to the Southside Seaport for lunch.

Afterward, we headed north to mid-town. I talked them into going to the top of the Empire State Building as my building appetite was not yet satisfied. The view from the top was beautiful as well and it was outdoors which made it even more special, but the day was winding down on a day I wanted never to end and the view wasn't quite as clear as from the World Trade Center due to the dusk settling in. To this day I have a picture my friend took of my girlfriend and I as we were looking south with the World Trade Center in the background right between the both of us. It was a disposable camera, so the cheapness of the camera, combined with it getting dark makes for a haunting picture of two silhouettes with the two towers barely recognizable in the background.

Eight years later, it was another beautiful September day, this time in Dublin, Ohio when I arrived at work. I hadn't spoken with the girl from Long Island in five or so years and she was nothing more than a good memory to me as I now had been married for nearly two years and my wife and I had had a little boy just seven months old. I was listening to sports radio that morning as soon as I got in. It was 1460 AM (The Fan) in Columbus and Chris Spielman and Kirk Herbstriet were pontificating on the Buckeyes and their recent struggles in Jim Tressel's first year. I remember it was Speilman that first mentioned that the TV in the studio had gone to a special report and something about a small plane crashing into one of the towers He thought nothing of it or so it seemed and so neither did I. I'm picturing some poor guy who lost control of his little twin-engine plane. Anyway, they started discussing the Buckeyes again and then something else got their attention. Little did they, me, or everyone else know what was in store for us in the next hour. That our world as we knew it would be flipped upside down. I called my Mom and she mentioned as she is watching the TV that another plane has hit the other tower. I'm was in shock. I think it was at this point when the whole office was up out of their cubicles and looking at each other. What the hell is going on? From there it got sketchy as our managers had their weekly meeting, leaving us all on the floor trying to figure out what was going on. All the while, some were still trying to work quietly in their cubes amongst the chaos. People were on the phone yelling across the room. Others like me were trying to pick up live reports on the internet as we listened for updates over the radio. I still had not had a chance to wrap my mind around what was going on. It had not settled in and when someone yelled across the room that one of the towers had collapsed, my initial thought was "what do you mean, collapsed? Seriously. How? There is no way" Nobody had a TV so we had no clue except for what friends and loved ones were telling us over the phone or what the radio and internet was telling us. So, at this point I wasn't sure what to believe. Our managers were still in a meeting. Then it was confirmed again that one of the towers indeed went down. My body was numb. I couldn't picture this enormous structure collapsing. It just did not register. It was at this time that I started panicking a little, thinking about my wife and child at home. What the hell is going on? Is this the end of the world? People were yelling about more planes missing. The Pentagon getting hit. I felt my blood pressure rising. I felt scared, angry, and unsure all at the same time. This was it. There was a group of guys in our office that were always joking around. Being sort of new I didn't know them very well, but I noticed a couple of them laughing about something. Nervous laughter. To this day, I have no idea what they were laughing about. It could have been anything. But in the heat of all this stress I snapped and yelled "What the F---are you laughing at? Shut the hell up?" I was panicked. Where were our stupid managers? Did they have no idea what was going on?

Then our managers came out of the meeting and when they discovered what had been going on, they told us to go home immediately. I bolted. When I got home, my seven-month old little boy was playing on the living room floor. The television was on in background showing the towers falling over and over again. He was just playing there, of course, oblivious to it all. It was at that moment that I was overwhelmed with emotion. I ran over to him, picked him up and squeezed him. I remember crying and thinking how horrible it was that I brought this perfect little being into such a messed up world. That's all I could think. I called my best friend and told him to meet me at my house. He showed up with the other co-owner of his company. They had no wives and kids of their own and this was a day to be together, so they came over. They brought a case of beer and we sat down and watched events unfold and drank. Honestly, it was easier to take it all in with a few friendly faces and a few beers. It was the only way to keep from having some sort of nervous breakdown.

Then, later on in the day we were out on my deck. It was so quiet. I have a large backyard and you can see the horizon pretty much all the way around the sky. Usually, at a given moment there can be 10 planes flying over out home going in all directions. I've actually counted as many as 14 before at one time. It was quiet. Sunny. Blue sky. Beautiful. Calm. Eerie. Then we hear a loud noise with a plume of smoke following it. It's coming from the west. It was Air Force One and it flew directly over my house. The news was just talking about the President coming back from a secret bunker somewhere in Nebraska back to Washington and he was now flying over my house. It was so damn eerie. That's the best word I can come up with.

Later that evening when my friends got up to leave, I remember this hesitation, like I was scared that night was coming and they were leaving. I just felt so scared. My wife and I watched the president's address to the country later that evening. Of course, we had been attacked. We were going to get whomever was responsible. Yeah, but I didn't feel any better about it. A couple of days after that tragic day, my mother-in-law invited me to a special prayer service at our church. I'll admit I'm catholic, but I would go to church maybe twice a year. Christmas. Easter. I did not hesitate to go this night. We lit candles and kneeled and said the rosary. My wife held our son and what was a few tears I shed on 9-11, exploded into me balling right there. I just couldn't get the images out of my head. I couldn't imagine how those that had died had suffered. How they had gone to work, just like me on a beautiful day and the horror that would await them. I felt so bad for the babies who lost mothers and fathers. For husbands who lost wives and wives who lost husbands. For parents that had lost their children. I couldn't imagine the pain of losing someone like that. Having a wife and child made me so much more sensitive to it all. I couldn't sleep for days. I didn't want to go back to work. What was the point? I was convinced the world was going to somehow come to an end. Why spend the last few days there? Every noise I heard at night made me jump. Honestly, I don't take any kind of medications. I just drink occasionally. But I tell you, I probably needed to be on something back then. If anything like that ever happens again, I will put myself on something. I think it effects people in different ways. I had just had a child. New house. New job. Recently married. I felt this sense of responsibility and then, all of a sudden, this happens and makes you feel like you have no power. No control. Those first few days back at work were torture for me. I just wanted to stay home with my wife and son.

Days later, I was back at work when I started thinking again about my trip to New York and the visit to the World Trade Center. It was such a similar day as 9-11. A beautiful late summer morning. Then it hit me why it seemed so similar. The trip was in September of 1993. We were in the WTC mid-morning before lunch, so it could have been eight years to the very second of 9-11. All I could think of was "Oh, God, please don't tell me I was in the World Trade Center on 9-11 exactly eight years prior to the very minute that everything happened. Please, God. No!" I raced home for lunch. I keep everything from vacations in a little storage bin. Any souvenir. Any meaningful scrap of paper. Finally, I found my stuff from my trip to New York. There it was. A little ticket stub with a picture of the twin towers. There was a serial number of some sort and a date on the bottom. I slowly lowered my eyes to focus on the date. It read 9-13-93. Whew. It turned out that 9-11-93 was the date of the OSU-Washington game that my buddy and had I attended just a day before leaving for New York. I have that ticket stub from that as well. I cannot explain the relief that I felt when discovering it was not 9-11 when we visited the World Trade Center. I don't know why. I just didn't need to be haunted in any other way by that day.

That Saturday, Ohio State had cancelled their football game just like everyone else around the country had done. I took my wife and son to the Horseshoe where they had a memorial and fundraiser for the victems of 9-11. It was in these bleachers so many times before we had screamed, cheered, and booed together. On this day we prayed and cried together. Thousands and thousands of Americans, not Buckeyes, praying and crying together. It was only a few days later, but it felt like healing. I had nobody I cared about that died in 9-11. I can't imagine what they went through. But as the days went by and football and baseball came back, the normalcy I so craved started to come back.

To this day, like many of you, I'm still haunted by what happened on 9-11. Even though I want to, I will make sure to never forget that day.

Strikes Out Looking
09-10-2008, 09:22 PM
I was working at FBI Headquarters (I'm not an agent and I no longer work there). Someone said a plane had hit one fo the towers, so we turned on the TV and saw the second tower get hit. Soon someone said that the Pentagon (five minutes away) had been hit as well -- then all kinds of crazy rumors started (other agencies were being attacked). It was pure chaos. My two youngest kids were at day care down the street, my wife was in another part of the city, my idiot boss was no where to be found (he was at a satellite office handing out awards) and I was pretty sure our building was a likely target.

Around 10:00 am, we were told to go home, which was easier said than done. I got my kids and our car and then sat in traffic for about an hour and a half. In my memory, You could see the smoke from the Pentagon, but I'm not sure if that is true or not. I do remember everyone constantly looking at the sky to see if any planes were falling out of it.

I finally made it to my wife's office and then home. We located our oldest son (the school had released everyone and he went home with a neighbor).

It was a beautiful day--later I took my kids to the park and noticed how blue the sky was and how there were no planes in it at all--which never happens (we can see the flight path for all 3 local airports).

09-10-2008, 09:36 PM
I was in my apartment in Muncie (I was in field sales at the time, slacking off) watching the Today show.

When the second plane hit, I was on the phone with my mom and immediatly said that it was Bin Laden.

09-10-2008, 09:46 PM
I was working for a newspaper in upstate New York at the time. I went into work around 11 a.m., and spent the rest of the day following the news, trying to figure out what was what, dealing with my own and my coworkers' emotions (we ALL knew people in NYC), and in the process I had to design the front page of the newspaper for the next morning, knowing that it mattered not at all and was symbolically significant all at the same time.

It was terrifying and surreal and overwhelming and sad.

09-10-2008, 09:52 PM
I had been up all night working on a project, I was walking my wife out to her car for work when my Mother-in-law came up the steps to tell us two plans had hit the world trade center, I assured the Mrs it must have been an accident and saw her off, then I turned on the news and watched all morning, Peter Jennings of course.

Later that afternoon my Mom called to tell me my Grandfather had been right outside the pentagon when it was hit, he was schduled for a meeting and got delayed at the last minute.

09-11-2008, 09:10 AM
I was out of work at that time and home. I had taken my wife to school. She is a substitute and was at a high school that day. I went back home and laid back down for a while. When I got up, around 10, I was going to start working on my resume and hopefully get a few ready to send out. I turned on the radio to the local sports talk station to listen to Tony Kornheiser while I worked on my resume. When I turned on the radio it was news and not sports. I knew something big was up then as that station never had regular news unless it was something really big. The first thing I heard was that one of the towers had collasped and I was wondering how that could happen. I went downstairs then and turned on CNN and slowly found out what was going on. Needless to say working on my resume became secondary that day. Later that morning my dad called me to check to see how I was. My oldest brother was working in NYC but I thought he worked in Brooklyn but my dad said he was now in Manhattan and so far hadn't heard from him yet. As it turned out he worked in a building about two miles from the towers. He said they evacuated their building as they told them it was a possible target. He and other co-workers wondered around for a while and took shelter in some other building. He couldn't get any calls out on his cell phone for quite a while but finally was able to contact his wife and let her know he was fine. I don't remember how he said he finally got home.
As for me,they didn't let out school early which was surprising to me. They did call it off the next day. I picked my wife up and we went to get something eat. It was eerily quiet out. Hardly anyone was out which is of course is unusual for that time of day. It was a crystal clear day and I remember it being just very silent. I live about 10 miles north of Dulles Airport and since there was no plane activity it was really quiet. It was one of those days that you never forget what you were doing and how you felt.

Chip R
09-11-2008, 09:27 AM
I was going into work about 10:30 then and when I woke up and turned on the TV I had it on a local station and saw a skyscraper was on fire. I thought at first it was the Carew Tower since it was a local station but I found out it was the WTC. I thought like most people that it was an accident. Then I saw the second plane go into it and knew that this was no accident. I also remember RedsZone being about the only online info we could get since the traffic on other sites was overwhelming. Some girl came into the office and started talking about how she was going to Chicago to see the Reds and Cubs play. I told her that wasn't happening. I'd recently broken up with my girlfriend and we were still hanging out together. She was house sitting for someone and whe asked if I could come over and hang out with her while she was alone there. It wasn't too far from my house so I told her I would do it. So I basically stayed over there with her during the evenings for the next several days. It was a strange time.

09-11-2008, 09:28 AM

http://news.yahoo.com/nphotos/911-Terror-Attacks/ss/events/us/081202sept11/s:/ap/20080911/ap_on_re_us/sept11_anniversary;_ylt=AtB88EalXlUnBE7IK.CkK75H2o cA

Never Forgive. Most importantely, NEVER forget.


09-11-2008, 09:49 AM
I was in college. I had class about 11:30 that morning, as did my roommate (different class). Got up around 10 or 10:30, with a rather odd message on the answering machine from my Mom...something about she's sure I know what's going on the world, and that she loved me. I thought nothing of it, thought she was having one of her "moments."

Roommate went to take a shower, while I ate breakfast. A couple minutes later, he peeks his head out of the bathroom and tells me my mom may have meant something...turn on the TV.

That's when I saw the aftermath. I was in complete shock...I didn't know what to do, or say, or even feel. I felt empty. It almost didn't feel real...yet felt very real. Hard to explain, but I probably don't have to.

Finally composed myself to continue getting ready for class....so off to class we went. I don't remember if we walked, or drove (it was a nice day, we may have walked)....I really don't remember if we talked or what we said.

Got to class, and of course there's TV's all along the hallway in the building with 9/11 coverage.

We weren't in class very long...the professor came in, talked for a minute, and said "there's really nothing I can say today that's going to make any difference. You guys are free to go."

Classes the rest of the day were cancelled. So I spent the rest of the day watching the coverage on the attacks.....I honestly don't remember when classes resumed, but I know it took me a few days just to even remotely get my life back to "normal."

09-11-2008, 10:34 AM
I was in NYC the weekend before 9/11 for my sister-in-law's wedding. It was my 1st time in NYC so I was in awe trying to fit everything in. We were in the WTC on 9/7 but decided not to go up to the top because it was too expensive and we would go the next time we came to NYC.:( I always feel bad for my sister-in-law to have her wedding anniversary three days before 9/11/01.

I was actually in Miami for work on 9/11. I worked a lot of 2nd shifts when I traveled so I didn't wake up until around 9:00 to go to breakfast and that's when I saw everything on the TV. I was in absolute shock. I didn't know when I would be able to get home to see my wife who I was just married to for 4 months at the time since no one knew if airlines would fly again anytime soon. My boss was also in Miami for business and secured one of the last rental cars and we drove through the night listening to the coverage after picking up another co-worker who was on his way to Miami but his plane landed in Tallahassee after planes were grounded. It was a very surreal day.

Luckily, no one my sister-in-law knew was killed. It was hard getting a hold of her for a while because she was in Italy at the time.

I never felt more out of control in my life that day and hope I never have the feeling again.

09-11-2008, 11:03 AM
Within minutes of the attack, the fam got a quick and cryptic mass email from my sister that she was ok, but no one was quite sure what was going on. At the time, she lived on the Upper East Side & worked in Times Square. Phone service was spotty at best, and she told us that she'd keep us posted as she knew more.