#1591 | Saturday, August 24th 2002
I was in Ellicottville, NY, on 9-11. Thats not unusual for most, but it was for me. I come from Auckland, New Zealand and i was staying there on student exchange. I still remember sitting in class, glued to CNN with about 40 other kids. I can remember what i was wearing, and what i had for lunch. Those are the kind of stupid details that i guess i'll remember always. Boundaries were broken between kids and teachers, and friendships were cemented forever. We will never forget.
Alison | 18 | New Zealand

#1585 | Friday, August 23rd 2002
on 9-11 I was in my geomerty class...taking notes...a girl ran into our class and told us to turn on the tv, something big had happened, and the teacher wouldn't turn on the tv until we were done with our notes...once we finally turn it on..pretty much the whole class was crying, and we thought we were all going to die.
Annie | 18 | Missouri

#1577 | Tuesday, August 20th 2002
It was 16:00 over here in Israel. All channels stoped their programs and turned to the news. We were shocked. An attack on the world trade center. First it was one building, then suddenly another plane crashed into the second building.

We watched the news all night. It was a tragedy to the American people but also to us here in Israel, as we are in constant war agains terror.

Here in Israel, unfortunatly, terrorist attack are quite often, and are forgoten very quickly. It became our way of life. Our daily news are forgoten, but the events of September 11th 2001 will forever be remembered.

Oded | 18 | Israel

#1552 | Thursday, August 15th 2002
I was in my third period art class, on the second day of school. When our teacher walked in 15 minutes late, we jokingly scolded her for being late to class and asked if we could put the radio on. She just stood there in shock for a moment and she asked us to sit down. She said "Girls, something terrible has happened to our nation that I need to tell you about." We all sat in silence, wondering what could have happened. The first thought that jumped into my mind was that the President had been assassinated ... what other terrible thing could have happened to out nation?

Before she began to tell us the news, she looked at one of my classmates and assured her that my her mother was safe and that she "got out." At that point, many of us started to worry. We knew it was something in New York or New Jersey if our own parents were in danger. She began very calmly, telling us that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. After talking a deep breath, she added that a second plane had crashed into the other tower. Someone immediately asked if it was terrorism. She gave them a quick look, almost as if she was putting them on hold because she had more to tell us. My teacher then told us that the Pentagon has been hit and that one of the towers has collapsed. We sat there in silence and disbelief at what we had just been told. At this time, any student with a family member working at the trade center was asked to go to the office. I watched 3 of my classmates file down to the office with absolute fear and terror in their eyes. They returned only moments later, nervously informing us that the phone systems were out and that no calls could be made into New York. One girl did get through, but she was placed on the company's hold line. Instead of the usual music, she heard news of the ensuing events. When she returned to out classroom, she told us that reporters were saying that there was ash raining down on the City... I immediately thought of the movie, "Schindler's List," when the ashes from concentration camp ovens would snow down in Germany.

Secretly ignoring our principal's orders, my teacher turned on the radio and allowed us to listen. She also turned on a television and took it with her to the back corner of the room, but did not let us see because they were worried that panic would set it. She read us each message that scrolled at the bottom of the TV and then let out a panicked sigh as she watched the second tower collapse in a replay. Worried about her own sister working in Manhattan, my teacher just stood in front of the television, in some sort of transfixed daze. The rest of us sat quietly in our chairs, listening to the radio and comforting those who worried about their loved ones. We had been told that all planes were grounded, yet we heard the loud sound of an aircraft above us. This, we would later learn, was one of many military jets circling above us.
When third period finally ended, there was a mass of confusion in the halls. Half of the students were crying and panicking, and half of the students were puzzled and unaware of the magnitude of what had happened. During lunch, I slipped up to the computer lab so that I could find out the complete news. News websites, however, were overwhelmed and it was difficult to learn much of anything. I finally gave up on the administration and their rules and slipped off to the bathroom with my cell phone. After trying for nearly ten minutes, I finally got through to my parents, who were watching the events unfold across the river. I told my parents that I loved them, wiped away my tears, and gathered with my friends again as we prayed that we might get to see another day; because at that moment in time, nothing was certain and any fate was possible.

TS | 18 | New Jersey

#1522 | Tuesday, August 6th 2002
I was actually sick that day and hanging in front of the TV... I was zapping right along and all of a sudden I was on CNN and saw that an airplane had flown into the WTC. I thought: that's pretty stupid, what a mistake... I kept watching it... My mom came home and then the second plane flew in... I shouted as loud as I ever did: "Holy Shit !!!" My mom came rushing down, my brother walked in from the garden and they saw the rerun... My dad came home from his work, saw the rerun and said: this is the work of terrorists, there's no other explanation.. I said: no, it has to be some kind of terrible accident, some radarinstallation at JFK must be alligned wrong or something like that.. Then a plane crashed into the Pentagon and another one crashed somewhere in Pennsylvania... I just sat there in shock... The first tower fell down and I felt cold shivers down my spine... I still have them whenever I think about it or see the images again.. Unfortunately, the dog needed to be walked, so I did that and when I came back, the second tower had collapsed... It was all we could talk about at the dinnertable and the next day at school we were hardly taught a thing. Everyone discussed, including the teachers... At one 'o clock in the afternoon, our break, the school anounced that everyone had to be silent for two minutes. We were the first school in the Netherlands to do that. It was terrible and I can assure you that this is a story I'll be telling my grandchildren....

By the way, I'm sorry if I messed up the sequence of events, but it was very hectic and I can't exactly remember what was first and what ended it... Sorry.

Jarno Miedema
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Jarno Miedema | 18 | Netherlands

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