#2270 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
I was working from home on my computer like any other day when my husband called me and said, "Turn on the tv..." I didn't want to stop what I was doing but he insisted that it was important. When I turned on the tv, the WTC had a gaping hole in the side of the building. Then I watched in horror as the 2nd plane hit the other tower, and the Pentagon was hit, and the plane in PA crashed, and the towers fell. My husband decided to pick up our daughter at day care and come home. At about 11 a.m., we realized that his parents were in NYC and that his father had an interview just two blocks from the WTC. We frantically tried calling their cell phone but could not get through. For about a half hour, we weren't sure about the fate of his parents. Then finally we heard from them. They were just blocks away in a cafe when the planes hit. They were able to make it uptown to my brother-in-law's apartment safely. We spent the rest of the day calling and emailing our friends and relatives to make sure that everyone was okay (we have several friends and family memebers both in NYC and DC). Then for 4 days, we watched the news and wept with the rest of the nation. We grieved for those who weren't so fortunate and thanked G-d that our family was safe.
Jackie Silver | 31 | Pennsylvania

#2136 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
I was in chemistry class at my university. Everyone seemed so distracted, and I didn't know what was going on. Someone then said that two planes has just crashed into the World Trade Center. He laughed, nervously, not knowing what else to do. It was so bizarre; no one knew how to take it.

Afterward, people just stood around, like zombies, staring at the TV. People cried, random strangers hugged each other. The students and staff at the school tried to comfort each other.

It was a frightening, sad, and horrible day. I will never forget it.

Lisa | 18 | Pennsylvania

#2089 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
A friend of mine had been visiting the night before, and he ended up staying with me the night of the 10th. The morning of the 11th, we both had to work--so he got up to go home. It was about 9 in the morning. He left, and I was going to go back to sleep--but couldn't. I turned on the radio, and I heard "A plane has crashed into the World Trade Center." I remember thinking, what a sick and twisted joke. They continued to talk about it, as I laid in bed. I got up to turn on the tv, and on every channel was a picture of the World Trade Center with smoke and fire pouring from it. Then the second plane hit. I was absolutely stunned..I didn't know what to think or what was going to happen next or what was going on at all.
The rest of it all happened so fast...the plane crashing into the Pentagon, the plane crashing into the ground in PA, the Towers crashing. It was all so unreal and hard to imagine.
I work with children, and the only thing I kept thinking was "I have to go to work today....what will I tell them? How can I assure them that they will be kept safe?"
But they were talking about closing the streets of Pittsburgh, shutting down the city. There were reports that the plane that crashed in Shanksville was headed for Pittsburgh, was headed for Washington. I wasn't due in at work until 2 or 3 that day, but I got ready at noon and went in to work. It took me over an hour to make a trip that should have taken 30 minutes.
The thing I remember most is listening to the radio, and hearing the lady trying to give reports of what was going on. Her voice was shaking, she was having a very difficult time reading what she was supposed to. She had to stop and let someone else read it. What she was trying to tell us was that bodies were falling from the Towers before they fell.

I will never forget the images I saw that day and have seen since; the things I have heard that day and since....I hope the victims did not suffer too much and are resting in peace. I hope the families heal as much as possible, and I hope the rest of us never forget.

Rebecca | 23 | Pennsylvania

#2052 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
I was at home that morning and I got a call from my mother-in -law. That's how I found out about it.
Michele Yakscoe | 32 | Pennsylvania

#2027 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
I was at work sitting at my workstation when one of our employees came running in and stated that two planes had crashed into the WTC. We turned on our television and about 30 of us huddled around, watching in disbelief. Some postulated theories of why the planes hit, while others cried. We all knew it was foul play.

At first, it was like watching a bad sci-fi movie. Then the calls from spouses and friends started coming in…. a car bomb explosion near a mall in DC; … a jetliner circling above the White House… explosion at The Pentagon….a 747 crashed near Somerset, PA. …a plane was hijacked out of our airport (PIT) and on its way to another target…they are evacuating downtown…etc. The most horrible image was the live telecast of the first tower crashing to the ground. At that time, no one knew how many were trapped inside. Earlier that year, we watched as our Three Rivers Stadium was imploded, and all I could think of was that earth-shaking collapse and the dust cloud smacking me in the face.

We kept staring across the river at the skyscrapers in downtown Pittsburgh, wondering if they would be next. Now I’m getting nervous! I called home to my wife and kids to ensure that they locked the doors and had access to my gun cabinet. Our employer sent us home at noon. Total gridlock- It took two hours to travel about 11 miles. My head was fixed on the sky above the entire ride, looking for those eleven (11) unaccounted-for jetliners. Then a few hours later, the sickening sound of silence in the skies; so quiet that it was irritating.

I live in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, and I realized (later that evening) that if the heroes of Flight 93 would have initiated their attack a minute or two earlier, their plane could have crashed in our neighborhood. Memories of the Flight 427 crash a few years back resurfaced. I sat glued to the television for the next week. I didn’t sleep a wink.

Although I don’t have any immediate friends or family that were killed in the attack, the events really hit home. I was transformed from a cozy spectator to a panicked American under attack. I am forever scarred by the chaos and images of that horrible morning.

Jake | 36 | Pennsylvania

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