View Full Version : Remembering 9-11
09-11-2006, 07:12 AM
Where were you? What do you remember most?
I have several memories. I remember that day, standing on a dock watching the towers fall. I remember not knowing where my close friend was, and wondering what people I knew who would be dead that I would find out about later.
I think of BCA instructor Gary Nelson who lost his daughter that day, and former colleagues of mine who lost their lives.
I remember a week later, sitting in the gate area of an empty airport, looking at the other six people there waiting to board a plane, trying to determine if any of them are terrorists.
I remember walking out of the downtown subway station two weeks later, the first thing that hits you was that awful smell. Then the sound...the sound of machinery pumping somewhere in the distance. The first thing you see stepping out of the subway --- The sight of Building 5, still standing, larger than life, but totally burned out, looking like a mere shell---the black paint mostly burned off. The steady stream of smoke coming from behind building 5, knowing that was the site of the Towers. Picking papers off the ground from trading activities of Cantor Fitzgerald.
Seeing big red 'X' marks on buildings to show that the body parts had been removed from the roofs. Stepping into a building with an 'X' on it realizing it was someone's burial ground.
09-11-2006, 07:46 AM
I was sleeping when it started. My fiance was in bed next to me watching TV. I heard it going on in one of those halfway waking up states, but it didn't register with me. She tried waking me up to tell me, and I gave one of those traditional "yeahs" you give when you're sleeping and don't want to be bothered. Then I happened to roll over and open my eyes to see the second tower get hit. I spent the rest of the morning holding her and doing the best I could to answer her questions as to why such a thing would happen, and on the phone with practically everyone I knew. Don't think I'll ever forget every detail of that morning as long as I live.
9 Ball Girl
09-11-2006, 08:35 AM
I was standing about 5 blocks away watching the buildings burn (I was on my way to work at 26 Fed Plaza). Then I remember seeing the bodies falling/jumping out. Then I ran towards work when I heard the weird sound of metal buckling. Then I stopped to look again. Then I saw the 2nd tower pancaking on itself. Then I helped remove dust from a man. I bumped into the 2 brothers that made a film. Then I started to walk North towards my sister's job. Hours later, my sister and I started the trek back home to Brooklyn. On the bridge, we stopped and looked at what used to be our favorite view of Manhattan. Then we saw 7 WTC fall down. On the Brooklyn side, there were tons of police officers handing out water to those that came across the bridge and helped "dust us off". That was on a Tuesday.
By Thursday I was back at work (since we're IT, we were allowed back into our building) and I went to one of our state offices located across the street from the WTC. I didn't wear a mask and the smell of burnt out buildings and death filled my nostrils. That smell lingered for months. I found out later that day of the deaths of 2 friends--both from Cantor Fitzgerald.
I'll always remember. I'll never forget.
09-11-2006, 09:23 AM
Like many, I have thought about that day, and what the country went through, and those who lost loved ones in the attack. I remember hearing it on the car radio as a group of co-workers returned from a meeting with a client. I remember going back to the office and being glued to the television in the break room for the rest of the day. I remembered it all. Then I heard a comment on the radio that, yes this should be a day to remember, but also a day to review what we have done to prevent another attack, and what we still need to do.
My concern is that we as a country didn't learn much. We have done nearly nothing to secure our boarders to stop people from entering this country illegally. Our ports remain open to attack, and political posturing is tying the hands of those who are charged with preventing future attacks.
On the plus side, we now feel up little old ladies boarding aircraft, make everyone take off their shoes for inspection, and confiscate toothpaste and shampoo from passengers.
Those who fail to learn from history are bound to repeat it!
The terrorists who want to destroy our way of life will continue to plot new ways to bring us to our knees.
My heart goes out to the victims of this attack and their families. But I fear that we have not seen the last of this kind of terror. I hope I am wrong!
09-11-2006, 09:54 AM
I was at work when the first tower was hit. I was getting my day in order looking over what appointments I had set up and making sure I was set. My father came in from a breakfast meeting and said about the tower being hit. Since we only had a 5 inch tv, the picture wasn't great. Then the second tower was hit and both fell. I went to my appointments but nobody showed up. My little town of 25,000 was completely deserted at 10am. Nobody was on the streets walking or driving. We closed our office at about 11:30 for the rest of the day. Not much else happened the rest of that week. In the words of FDR, " A day that will live in infamy." At that point in time, I began to realize how other countries were with the bombings and terrorist attacks.
09-11-2006, 10:07 AM
I was in front of a senior English class when the
principal came on the intercom and told us to turn
on our T.V.'s. I kept thinking " Lord, this can't be
09-11-2006, 11:43 AM
I was at my home in Arkansas recovering from a truck running into my car from behind a week earlier. I was talking on the phone to a business associate in Detroit when I saw the first plane crash damage on the TV. I hung up and watched as the story developed. My cousin called and said the Arabs who ran a service station were outside jumping up and down and celebrating. I was shocked and stayed by the TV all day. I was injured and could not go very far anyway but I had been feeling sorry for myself and this made me forget my pain. Like many of you, I knew people who died in the towers but it was several weeks before I got confirmation. My greatest memory was of the stories and film of those firefighters going up into the terror while others were trying to get out.
What Heros! I still get mad when I think about the cowardly attacks and the many wasted lives. I think, this is what Allah stands for.
09-12-2006, 11:47 AM
I remember wondering how what was originally reported as a cesna sized aircraft could make such a huge hole in one of the towers.
I remember the surreal moment when the second aircraft hit, realizing that this was no accident.
I remember my roomate, who's mother was working in WTC 5, panicking when he couldn't get through on the phone lines to see if she was ok.
I remember feeling relieved for Lloyd when he finally did find out that his mother was alright, but not good by any means.
I remember the shock when it was confirmed that the pentagon had been hit as well.
I remember not wanting to watch as people jumped out of the towers trying to escape the burning buildings, but being unable to turn away.
I remember realizing as the second tower fell, that I had tears running down my face, having never realized that I had been crying until then.
I remember waiting for news of the supposed 4th airplane, and it's destination of the White House. And not knowing whether to cheer or cry for the passengers of that aircraft when it went down in Pennsylvania.
I remember being glad I was in the service already so that I could have an immediate impact on what I knew was going to happen. War.
I remember having to go to work that night 6 hours earlier and thinking I wasn't doing enough.
I remember all of these things like they were yesterday. The events of that day, will stay with me, as they will for most people, for the rest of my life. Looking back on it now, I'm filled with a mixture of emotions. None morso then sadness. We can never change the events of that day. And even had we learned about it beforehand, there is no guarantee we would have or could have prevented it. But what we can do is reflect. And learn. And remember. Remember that there were hundreds of heroes amidst the horror of the day's events. Remember that in the days, weeks, and months immediately following the attacks, this country was a SINGLE UNION once again; of one heart, mind and soul. I remember the pride of being in the information field, of being a soldier, and most importantly, being an AMERICAN. The people who passed away that day gave us more than bitter memories, through their sacrifice, we found our country's identity again.
The feelings of the immediate moment, as well as the lingering feelings over the next few months, have long since gone. But I will always have the memories, good and bad. As long as we do, the tradgedy of that day 5 years ago can act as a catalyst, litmus test, and inspiration for many who follow us. As long as we have our memories. As long as we Remember.
SGT Joshua A. Johnson
A CO BSTB 4th BDE 10th MTN DIV, US ARMY
Task Force Warrior, Ghazni, Afghanistan
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