Was in a departmental meeting from 8 until 11. No one ever came in to let us know, so I didn’t see anything as it happened.
I lost two friends in the towers. One was in the South Tower and had made it out, but he went back up to check and make sure everyone else in his office had…he was on the 101st floor and got trapped when the second plane hit.
I’m so sorry, JJ.
I was in the sixth grade. Every day they gave us 40 minutes of free reading time. Basically we could get any book we wanted and sit down by ourselves and read. I was reading the first Harry Potter book.
Next thing I know, they rolled a tv in. The librarian had just got off of the phone and was crying. I could hear people, teachers probably, running down the hall way to the nearby class rooms. One of the teachers turned on the tv and turned it to channel 3. This was shortly after the second plane hit. We watched the immediate reviewing of events… I can still remember the videos like it was yesterday. We were just six graders but I think we all understood what this was, even if we couldn’t figure out the terrorism aspect. We knew something was horribly wrong.
It really dawned on me over the next few days and weeks what had really happened. Some of the other kids’ were being dropped off by their parents at school, with their fathers or mothers in their military uniforms. Unlike the normal days, before 9/11, where kids were simply dropped off with a wave or a kiss on the cheek, the military parents were walking them to the waiting area and then hugging them like they were never going to see them again. Hugs that lasted five minutes or more. Kids crying, their mom or dad trying to calm them down as they had to leave. We realized that many of our classmates’ parents’ units had been activated. Of course being young I didn’t really grasp the entirety of it all… but you figured it out pretty quick talking to the other kids.
I had already learned through watching the news what all had transpired, that the nation had been horrifically attacked. Almost immediately kids started discussing what was going to happen now. How the world had changed overnight. My great uncle, who was about 9 years older than my granddad, came over to the house and talked about how it felt exactly like December 7th, 1941. I realized then that I was actually older on 9/11 than he was when Pearl Harbor was attacked. And yet it was still seared into his memory so many decades later, the radio broadcasts that had announced what had happened in Hawaii.
Sort of realized then that it would be a day I would never forget. And the anger. Not even fully realizing what I was angry about, but I was angry. We all were.
About as nicely said, as humanly possible. You have a beautiful core.
I was working night shift at the time. I was watching some TV with breakfast when they interrupted with breaking news. I saw the second plane hit on live TV while they were talking about the first. I stayed up and saw both towers fall. It’s hard to believe it’s been 20 years. It still seems so surreal.
That kind of respect and caring for your fellow man…that runs Deep in some one…and fills me with sadness and pride in your friend. Made sure everyone else got out and gave his life to do so.
Thanks for sharing.
I was talking to my sister when the first tower collapsed. I remember her saying Oh My God what just happened.
My only response was its gone. It’s just gone.
I had the tv on as I was shaving and getting ready for work. I heard the tv say that an airplane had hit a building in NY and thought well that was unfortunate . Then they said a second one had hit. It took a second or two for me to realize “wait…that had to be planned”.
I was working in a defense plant at the time, and of course security changed completely after that day.
May your friends Rest In Peace.
I feel bad that I never fully understood what had happened until I was a little older. I knew something bad had happened, but for some reason it just didn’t fully hit me. Being a pre-schooler, I should have understood basic empathy.
Maybe today, on 9/12, we can come together as Americans once again. This country is not the same country as it was in 2001.
I was at home revising spreadsheets for work. I had the tv on for background.
I saw the first plane hit and I just froze, completely dumbfounded. I thought it had been a horrible accident. When the second plane hit I felt like I’d swallowed a lead balloon. I watched the events unfold throughout the day.
I felt overwhelming grief, anger and a sense of helplessness that others were suffering and here I sat safe at home.
At the same time, seeing the bravery of the responders and people helping one another made me so proud of fellow Americans. I saw the spirit of what America is all about on that day and the days to follow.
To this day, I cannot watch any of the movies that came out about 9/11.
On 9/12/2011 the late, great Harry Browne published the following:
by Harry Browne
September 12, 2001
T he terrorist attacks against America comprise a horrible tragedy. But they shouldn’t be a surprise.
It is well known that in war, the first casualty is truth – that during any war truth is forsaken for propaganda. But sanity was a prior casualty: it was the loss of sanity that led to war in the first place.
Our foreign policy has been insane for decades. It was only a matter of time until Americans would have to suffer personally for it. It is a terrible tragedy of life that the innocent so often have to suffer for the sins of the guilty.
When will we learn that we can’t allow our politicians to bully the world without someone bullying back eventually?
President Bush has authorized continued bombing of innocent people in Iraq. President Clinton bombed innocent people in the Sudan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Serbia. President Bush Senior invaded Iraq and Panama. President Reagan bombed innocent people in Libya and invaded Grenada. And on and on it goes.
Did we think the people who lost their families and friends and property in all that destruction would love America for what happened?
When will we learn that violence always begets violence?
S upposedly, Reagan bombed Libya to teach Muammar al-Qaddafi a lesson about terrorism. But shortly thereafter a PanAm plane was destroyed over Scotland, and our government tried to convince the world it was Libyans who did it.
When will we learn that “teaching someone a lesson” never teaches anything but resentment – that it only inspires the recipient to greater acts of defiance.
How many times on Tuesday did we hear someone describe the terrorist attacks as “cowardly acts”? But as misguided and despicable as they were, they were anything but cowardly. The people who committed them knowingly gave their lives for whatever stupid beliefs they held.
But what about the American presidents who order bombings of innocent people – while the presidents remain completely insulated from any danger? What would you call their acts?
When will we learn that forsaking truth and reason in the heat of battle almost always assures that we will lose the battle?
A nd now, as sure as night follows day, we will be told we must give up more of our freedoms to avenge what never should have happened in the first place.
When will we learn that it makes no sense to give up our freedoms in the name of freedom?
W hat should be done?
First of all, stop the hysteria. Stand back and ask how this could have happened. Ask how a prosperous country isolated by two oceans could have so embroiled itself in other people’s business that someone would want to do us harm. Even sitting in the middle of Europe, Switzerland isn’t beset by terrorist attacks, because the Swiss mind their own business.
Second, resolve that we won’t let our leaders use this occasion to commit their own terrorist acts upon more innocent people, foreign and domestic, that will inspire more terrorist attacks in the future.
Third, find a way, with enforceable constitutional limits, to prevent our leaders from ever again provoking this kind of anger against America.
T here are those who will say this article is unpatriotic and un-American – that this is not a time to question our country or our leaders.
When will we learn that without freedom and sanity, there is no reason to be patriotic?
I remember I had just finished my AIT (advanced individual training) for the Army and was home on leave when it happened. I was waiting for my buddy to pick me up and we were headed to the golf course. Watching first plane hit and the fire and smoke that followed, I just thought “that sucks.” I had no idea what was going to follow.
I wa son orders to Korea… now I had two plus years of training and hadn’t been in the “real army” yet- I didn’t know if orders were going to change, I was going somewhere else, what was going to happen. I just felt numb, angry, and couldn’t have been more proud to have been serving all at the same time.
This is a good point. I would assume much of the answer has to do with our relationship with Israel.
Thanks everyone for sharing your personal stories. I had a really rough weekend. 9-11 does that to me…but between my job and just the absolute sadness I feel even 20 years later for this unthinkable thing that happened to us, this post allowed me to deal with some of my feelings.
I hate that every year we have to relive these scenes of destruction, the towers falling, the sheer hugeness of it all. I appreciate everyone who posted. I had the ability to watch the even unfold live as I was off that day. I wish I had not been. I don’t think it would be as hard as it is for me each year had I not watched it all happen.
60 minutes did a nice piece last night about the 60 men and women…children of fire fighters who perished that day. 60 children, following in there parent’s footsteps to be part of the FDNY. That was pretty cool…and a wonderful tribute to the firefighters who died that day.
Thanks to the Moderators who moved this and pinned it for a couple of days. I appreciate that too.