#1976 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
On the morning of Sept 11th I was working at my customer service job since 8:30 am. It was just a normal day with me talking to customer’s explaining details of their charge accounts with our jewelry company. A few minutes before 9 am the radio had a news break announcing the “accident” of a plane flying into the World Trade Center. I started wondering how big of a plane and how high the plane hit. Customers were still calling in to my department so most of us went back to work, knowing people would keep us up to date as news became available through the day. A few minutes later we of course heard the news of the second plane hitting the towers, and we started looking at each other convinced we were being attacked.
As the morning slowly progressed we heard news reports of the Pentagon, as well as Flight 93. Of course we also heard many other landmarks in Washington DC that were falsely reported as having been attacked such as the Dept of State, the Capital building and possibly even the White House.
By noon we had very few customers actually calling in for credit information so I got the chance to go home early. I stopped by a local restaurant and grabbed a bite of lunch because I knew they had tv’s available and obviously they would have CNN on. I just sat there as I watched replays of the Twin Towers collapsing. After lunch I drove home while listening to coverage on talk radio. At home I finally got to see the coverage in private and was very surprised that I was able to get into the Internet. I had heard warnings that due to phone traffic being so heavy that I probably wouldn’t be able to get into the net. I immediately started to collect information about the attacks from different web sites.
Over the last year I have been very thankful for the Internet, as it has given me the ability to learn about some of the Hero’s of 9-11, such as Todd Beamer. I am currently reading Let’s Roll by Lisa Beamer, the story of Todd’s life. I highly recommend this biography.

Jeff Schilling | 32 | Ohio

#1965 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was travelling back from lunch in Edenbridge, Kent, England listening to the Simon Mayo show on Radio 5. He was describing the scene and stating that it was not yet clear what had happened, then the other plane hit the second tower and I, along with everyone else, probably realised that this was an organised attack.

My abiding memory will be trying to log onto various internet pages and finding many of them locked up, knowing that the whole world was watching the news and looking at the images of the planes crashing into the towers. Once on the web pages, the image that will stay with me forever is that of the people jumping to their deaths.

My thoughts and the thoughts of many others I know are with all the survivors of 9/11 and the families of those innocent people who lost their lives unneccessarily whilst just doing their jobs.

The site should be now made into a garden of rememberance with a memorial with all the names of the dead.

Simon Jones | 32 | United Kingdom

#1925 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was getting up to get ready for work, when I turn on the TV, as I always do each morning. I could not believe what I saw! I was in shock. I thought maybe something went horribly wrong with the plane....then I saw the 2nd tower get hit, Right then I knew it wasn't an accident. As was getting ready to head out the door to work....the Pentagon was hit also. I was so scared, I didn't want to leave the house. But I did. That day has changed my life forever.
Christina Camacho | 32 | Texas

#1829 | Monday, September 9th 2002
I was in Oregon, holding my baby girls just before waking them for the day, the grey light of morning was just coming in when my husband, who had just turned on the morning news, said Oh my God honey a plane just hit one of the trade center towers. Not knowing what the day would bring the first thing I did was hold my two children and think, Oh those poor children of those families. How lucky I am to be alive holding my children right now.
Kathleen | 32 | Oregon

#1818 | Monday, September 9th 2002
I was working, just like any other day, when a colleague/friend told me. I thought he was joking, until he gave me a URL. I went to it and couldn't believe what I was seeing.

At that moment I felt time stop, and then I felt everything change. I didn't know in what way, but I knew everything would be different. Then time resumed, and reality set in. Then a mild form of shock. I didn't want to believe, but what choice did I have.

I called some friends in the New York area to see if they were alright. My friends were, but they all personally knew at least one person who was killed. Days later I learned that someone from my hometown, who was related to a friend of mine here, was also killed.

After my company closed for the day, I went straight home and attempted to eat something. I managed to eat a little. After watching an hour of the news I decided I wasn't going to allow those cowards to win. So I drove up to Hammond Castle in Gloucester, MA. I ended up taking two black and white photos, neither of them very good.

On the way, though, I encountered an experience that has remained with me in amazing detail since.

I was at a stop sign and I had the choice of turning left or right. In front of me was a small monument and beyond that a sidewalk and then the ocean. There were two women, with their children, out enjoying the eighty degree weather. Two of the children were in strollers and the other three, two boys and a girl, about 3 or 4 were running around happily.

One of the boys had removed all of his clothes and was running around free as a bird when he decided that he needed to relieve himself. So, unbeknownst to his mother, he chose the monument at which I was facing and proceeded to do his thing. It was quite the contrast to the events of the day, and made me smile at the innocence, the lack of fear and the lack of understanding on what that day meant, and still means.

As I watched this, I again felt time stop, but the feeling I had that time wasn't one of dread or disbelief, but of hope. I couldn't help but laugh this sight, and neither could his mother and her friend.

Just then his mother noticed me and immediately blushed and ran over to her son, obviously thoroughly embarrassed that her son was defiling public property in front of stranger.

Her friend also noticed me and went into hysterics herself. So in an effort to assure them that I wasn't offended, I just smiled and nodded. There didn't seem to anything to say. I felt a profound sense of hope and encouragement that we as a nation, as a people, would not only make it through the tragedy, but that we would only become stronger.

And that sight, of the little boy peeing on a rock in public, still remains the most influential experience in my life. It serves to encourage me to live life one moment at a time, to live and let live, and to just be happy for what I have. That experience has enabled me to grieve when necessary, to laugh when laughter overcomes me, and to walk a middle path in the times in between.

greenbough | 32 | Massachusetts

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