#579 | Friday, December 28th 2001
On September the 11th of 2001, I was just waking up with it being around 7 AM here in Fairbanks, Alaska. I didn't know about anything and I was very tired that day like usual though. I was my normal self, not wanting to go to school. I was waiting for a little girl to come over so we could get on the bus together she is in Kindergarten and I am in 9th but our schools connect. Well about 10-15 minutes before she was to come over, my mom gets a phone call from my step-dad who gets to work at 6:00 AM telling her to turn on the TV and told her everything else. I didn't have a clue what was going on cause I was still waking up while laying on the couch being half awake. Mom turns on the TV with her hands over her mouth and I didn't really know what the World Trade Center's were so when my mom said that they had been blown up I was like "wow", just in awe. After listening to the TV, Emily, the little girl coming over was on her way and we turned off the TV so she didn't have to see until her parents told her, herself if they hadn't already. While we were waiting for the bus, my mom asks me if I wanted to go to school, myself trying to hold back the tears for seeing the images, I said "No, not today" So I put Emily on the bus and went back inside. A little later, while my mom went back to work, even though I told her she shouldn't go cause all I would do is worry since she works at the Federal Building here, but she went. My Grandma came to pick me up, she lives out on the local Army base here so we had to take the long way since they were blocking everything off already. We got to her house and I turned on the TV, she has a satellite and every single channel was tunned in on CNN updates. It was the saddest thing, seeing the images of people jumping out of the buildings, the dust and the pain just in everyones faces. That's my day on September 11th and I just pray when I have kids that they will never have those images in there heads because of the pain it causes even when your not that close to where it all happened.
Amanda | 15 | Alaska

#572 | Monday, December 24th 2001
When the attack first happened, I was getting ready for school. I don’t listen to the radio in the morning so I had no clue as to what everyone on the bus was talking about. I really didn’t have a clue until lunchtime, when my friend, Stephanie, asked my other friend, Gail if she wanted to watch the news in Mrs. Usher’s room. It was then that I found out that the Twin Towers were hit by planes and had come down.
I sat in Usher’s classroom for the whole lunch hour, and for once during lunch, my mind wasn’t on food. Everyone in the classroom watched the planes go into the Towers over and over again. Once in a while, I would steal glances at Usher. She looked like she was going to cry. When the bell did ring for period 7, nothing seemed real anymore. It was like a dream. During period 7, Alan and them didn’t do anything stupid, and Mr. Miller left us alone.
When period 8 came, I was in Usher’s classroom. And we were watching at the news. It was then that I found out that one of her friends worked on the second top floor of one of the twin towers. By the time, the bell rang, she looked like she was going to cry.
The attacks made me realize how important our friends were. Even though I live in Canada, and attacks like these are very unlikely, it still makes you thankful for what you have.

Stephanie Chan | 15 | Canada

#549 | Thursday, December 20th 2001
That day will live on forever I was sitting in class and the princeable came over into each and every class and since our class is room #1 we heard 1st he said he felt sorry I think he was mostly talking to our teacher because her son worked at the World Trade Center and he had died I remeber our teacher crying and crying she hasnt been back to school shes coming back after christmas but I know she wont be the same because that was her only son his wife and 2 children moved in with her to help her but I remeber how all my friends and I started to cry over and over again one of my friends dads had been in New York at the time but he didnt die he'd been in a different area but he still got pictuers of the place and how it looked i felt terrible and that piece of Histopry will live on 4-ever in all of our lives wether we be young old we will have a piece of history that will devastate us for the rest of our lives!
Brittany | 15 | Arizona

#548 | Thursday, December 20th 2001
When all this happend I was at school working in the Library The princible came over the entirecom and said there'd been an attck on the world trade center and I was like wow but I got to sit and watch the t.v cause I had library that whole day I watched it over and over I think thats really the only time the media was actually practical !
Becky | 15 | Alabama

#535 | Wednesday, December 19th 2001
I live in NJ but I came into the city September 10th for a Yankees/Sox game. (Yanks rule!) The game was rained out and my sister and I stayed with a friend at Columbia that night. We were to take the 9:00 bus home that morning of the 11th because I had to go home to pack for the drive to school in NH that day. We were in the Port when the planes actually hit. As we boarded the bus, I received a call from my dad on my cell phone. The coverage was breaking up but I could make out "Something terrible....World Trade Center..plane crash....not be able....get out...city." My first thoughts were it was an accident but as the bus pulled out onto the ramp, I saw the massive brown mass clouding the crystal blue sky obstructing the view of lower Manhattan. I could hear much activity going on the bus driver's radio. When I heard,” The first one's gone," that’s when I realized it was no accident from a tiny 4-person Cessna. We approached the Lincoln Tunnel but it had been sealed off for fear that it would be the next target. Our bus driver then stopped the bus and stood up.
"We've been attacked, we're under full terrorist alert. We can't leave the city” he said as he searched for words. Nobody quite understood the severity of the situation.
“I have to make a call!!! It’s urgent!” an elderly woman several rows behind me shrieked.
“I’m sure we all have people to call but all phone lines are down.” He said trying to reassure her. The bus was abuzz as we drove around in circles. Finally, we returned to the port and were told to stay on the bus. “NO!” my sister whispered to me. “We will get off this bus, we’re not going to stay anywhere where there are people” she ordered. Her being 5 years older I listened. I was just in a state of disbelief and confusion, this was a nightmare I couldn’t wake up from. We got off the bus and ran through the Port Authority building to the street. The taxi line was about 20 people long, everyone frantically dialing cell phones, some crying, some just standing in disbelief trying to absorb everything. A vendor nearby turned on a radio and a group gathered around and sat on the sidewalk together as they listened to the events unfold. People on the streets gave each other mutual shoulders to cry on and just tried to understand together. We stood on the line for taxis but every car was racing uptown to get further away. But one stopped at the end of the line, a good-hearted cabbie that saw two lost teenaged girls.
We went back uptown to our friend’s apartment. It was then that it hit me, when the radio spurted out the words “terrorist” and “Osama bin Laden.” A person had intentionally done this. That name sounded so cold, so heartless. Our cabbie tried and tried to get in touch with his wife. He finally got through. The relief in her voice as she sobbed hysterically into the phone brought tears to my eyes. How many thousands of people weren’t as lucky as her? The pain was unconceivable.
Once we reached our destination we bid our cabbie farewell and thanks and turned on a TV. I saw the most horrific sights in my life, The amateur footage of the second plane flying into the tower, the deluge of the towers collapsing, and the ghost-like lower Manhattan with people blanketed with debris running for their lives are images forever ingrained into my memory. I spent the rest of that day watching the television hoping to find an answer, some kind of explanation justifying the horror. The usually composed Peter Jennings broke down on the air. It was all of us. We tried to be strong but the tears came penetrating through. This was unlike anything that had ever happened to our generation. It was a day that all of us would remember forever. I couldn't sleep that I night. I stayed awake and listened to the roar of the low flying fighter jets as they circled Manhattan.

Ash | 15 | New Jersey

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