#1594 | Saturday, August 24th 2002
i was at work (in an elementary school) when my husband telephoned with the news and as we were on the phone, the 2nd plane hit. i knew it was terrorism and prayed that an American was not responsible.
lisa tutino | 40 | New York

#1592 | Saturday, August 24th 2002
I was getting my children ready for school, when my sister called from the city to tell me she had spent the night before with my brother FF George C. Cain, having a wonderful dinner and time with him and the guys. She said he was getting off at 9:00. It was about 8:40. I hung up with her, got the kids on the bus, came in the door and my world was forever changed. My husband had the news on and said, "You're not going to believe this." But I didn't worry about George, because I figured he was on his way home. I was more concerned about my sister. Little did I know, that he was in the midst of the worst terrorist attack this country will ever know. He was, of course, lost in that horror. His entire truck was lost that day. He's in heaven now. But for an entire month, I prayed and swore he was working his way out of there, even after we went down to the site, I couldn't accept that he would never hug me or call me again. I still can't , almost a year later. George would have gone in there even if he was home, or on his way home. He would have turned right around, cursed the bastards that did this, and gone in to help. Thats the kind of guy he was, all the firemen are like that. He's with his buddies, but I wish to God he was here with his family. We love you George, always and forever. Love, Nancy
Nancy K. Nee | 40 | United States

#1407 | Thursday, June 20th 2002
On 9/11, I was in Princeton, NJ conducting business at my firm’s HQ. I had flown in from my home in Northern California a few days before. My cousin is an executive at the Baltimore branch office for the same firm, and he had been in town as well. That morning, we were preparing to get on with our business for the day, as it was the last day of our trip. I was scheduled to fly out of Newark back to Oakland Airport later that afternoon. Needless to say, that flight never took off.

My cousin & I were engaged in some casual conversation with a particular dept. group, and someone mentioned a plane had hit one of the Twin Towers. With this brief info. only, I recall thinking as others did that it was probably a small private plane, and that it would indeed be major news in NY. But moments later the severity of the incident became more clear, as we saw from our source of information (CNN.com) that this was no small plane that had run off course.

Obviously, things happened quickly thereafter. Everyone became glued to a computer screen, watching various news sites, and somewhere there was a radio on. The normal business day we all had envisioned was long gone when the second plane hit. The full force of that fateful day hit me when the first tower fell – I remember feeling chills run down my arms. My eyes locked to my cousin’s and he immediately said what we were both thinking – we need to get out of here.

We agreed to get our things together and drive his car to his home outside of Baltimore. I went outside and used my cell to call my wife. I knew she would be just getting our two small boys breakfast at that time, readying them for school. I also knew we had a rule of no TV in the morning until after everyone was fed, dressed, washed up and ready to begin the day – and since is was a little after 7AM/PST, she probably didn’t know what was occurring.

She answered and I told her to turn on the news immediately, that planes had hit the WTC Towers, and that they had collapsed. I told her I was OK of course, and that I was going to stay in Baltimore. No flying for me tonight. I said I’d call her from the road a little while later. And honey, I love you.

Well, I made it to Baltimore and stayed with my cousin in the country. We heard on the drive south much of what the rest of the nation was hearing. Driving through the Philadelphia area was eerie – I remember seeing a large overhead sign flashing “New York City – CLOSED”. There were State Troopers and National Guard vehicles all over, and it was damn good to see them.

I worked out of the Baltimore office for the next few days, and was able to communicate to all those that I needed to. I came to realize later that the events of 9/11 actually changed my professional life to a large degree, as the time in that regional office proved to be very beneficial for a variety of reasons. But obviously I take little solace in that. In fact at the time I concentrated mostly on praying, and trying to understand who had done this horror…and why.

My next thought was how to get home. As the days passed, I worked with my travel agent in SF to finally secure a flight out of BWI to Oakland Airport. It was not fun to fly at that time, but other forms of travel were simply not possible or feasible. I had been booked on flights that were cancelled hours before their departure, and I had been scheduled to fly out of airports from Dulles to JFK (to destinations as far away from my home as LAX or Vegas). I was one of the thousands of stranded businessmen/women, who just wanted to see their families again. The airport was almost surreal, with seriously armed soldiers, police dogs, ID checks everywhere, detailed searches, and tension in the masses. But finally, 10 days later, I flew home.

I was a very young boy when Bobby Kennedy was shot. The memory has faded, but I still recall the tension and sadness of the adults I was with that day in my home in Northern New Jersey. I am sure that my two sons, ages 7 & 4 last Sept., will remember Sept. 11th in that same manner. Hearing my 4 year old say the word “terrorists” upon my return was a bit uncomfortable, and kind of sad.

The world changed forever for our children that day. And like millions of others, I will never forget.

David | 40 | California

#1249 | Saturday, May 4th 2002
On the morning of September 11,2001 I woke up rather late as I didnt have to be to work til noon. It was also my 40th birthday so I took my time getting ready. I usually turn the tv or at least the radio but on that day my husband had just gotten home from starting a new job, so I talked with him instead. I did turn on the radio in my car as I was going to work. Within 2 minutes after leaving I knew. I arrived at work and the first thing as I looked at the birthday cake my co-workers had made for me, was my boss running up to me and giving me a hug.. I work at a hotel so I couldnt leave as much as i wanted to. I just wanted to be home with my family. As the day progressed I said many prayers for allthose who could have possibly been lost and for those who were in the rescue effort.. As soon as I got home I made sure I hugged and told everyone how much I loved them. We didnt celebrate my birthday on that day, but we shared a fateful day which none of us will ever forget.
Cindy Gardner | 40 | New York

#1201 | Monday, April 22nd 2002
I was sleeping and my friend living on Vandenburg Air Force Base called and woke me up. She said they were telling the civilians to leave the base so she was coming to our town. I sat glued to the TV for the next two days. When my kids got home from school, they had been watching it all day. Saddest day ever in America.
Janey Parker | 40 | California

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