#2071 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
Hi,
I am an American living in the Netherlands. Born in NYC and raised in North Carolina.
At the time of that most horrific event, I was working in Duesseldorf,Germany. It was my last week there and was to return home on Friday. The office was very quiet on that day and it was very dreary out. It had rained a bit. A customer came into the showroom. This was around 3 in the after noon our time here. He said there was a big fire in NY. We were somewhat confused. One of the others turned on the t.v. and there it was. I was motionless, speechless. Of course everyone turned their attention to me because I'm American. We watched for more then an hour. At the close of business I was on my way to my appartment. I turned on the radio to see If I could learn more. Then the DJ played John Lennon's "Imagine". I broke down. I was glued to CNN for most of the evening, only going for dinner. The streets in Duesseldorf were quiet. Everyone was home. I'll never forget. My boss called me into hos office the next day and talked with me about my feelings. He let me take the rest of the day off.

Andrea Konings-Carpenter | 36 | Netherlands

#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

#1993 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was at work when I heard. Our boss said, "A plane flew into the WTC". We all just stopped what we were doing and ran for the TV. I had this horrible feeling that it would be one of the worst days of my life, and it was. I didn't know anybody there...I have never even been to NYC, but I could not stop crying for them...to this day I cannot stop crying for them. I work at a blood center. We had hundreds come that first day, and each day after for a solid week. It was good, to be busy, to have something to do, but when I got home each night, all I could do was sit and watch it over and over and just cry for those people....as a newlywed, the stories of the wives talking to their husbands, and saying goodbye, knowing that they would never see each other again, really touched me the most. So we worked hard, we listened to each of the blood donor's stories, we prayed for all those families...and now it's a year later and it's like it happened yesterday. I can understand how people felt when Kennedy was shot, or when Pearl Harbor was bombed...your life is different, even if you weren't there. The whole world is different now, after that day, nothing will ever be the same again.
Christina | 36 | Tennessee

#1894 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was sitting at home and had just sat down to my computer.I went online to check my yahoo news page as usual. One of the headlines was "Plane crashes into one of the twin towers".I clicked on it and there was no story associated because it was too early. I thought it must have been a small plane accident. I checked back a while later and noticed the headline had changed to 2 planes hitting the towers. A chill went through me and I knew we were under attack. I ran to my television and never left it all day. I called my wife and a good friend to discuss the events as they took place. My wife had just stopped working near the towers few months before the attacks. All we could say to each other is how grateful we were that she was not there. But we were so sad for the people that were. I cried for at least a week on and off...and to this day still shed tears..I am sure I always will. We must live are lives..we must love each other and help each other..now and always. Freedom will never die.
Jim | 36 | New Jersey

#1889 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was working that morning at our office in Camden, New Jersey. Their was no television just a tv/vcr. Could not get any stations. People were coming in the office that morning saying that WTC was bombed, airplane hit the WTC. Me and my co worker next to me. Could not believe it.

Since we had access to the internet on our computers I deceided to see what was going on and to my horror I saw the WTC on fire. I changed the station on my radio and heard the horror of what happen, what seem like hours I heard a plane hit the Pentagon, and almost and hour or so later another hijack plane landed in the fields in PA.

Fear and worry hit me when I heard all of this. I have family that live in Manhattan, Brookln, and Bronx. Several of my co-workers had friends and family working or living there. We were tring to get a hold of them, cell phones, pagers etc. were not working. Philadelphia and other cities were at stand still. The way we do things were changing right in front our eyes. Those who had younger childeren left early to pick them up, those that could, I was trying to reach my husband on his cell, but no reply.

I finally reached him and he was fine he also heard what happen on the radio.
I called my baby-sitter to see how everything was going. I stayed there till 4:30. I called my mother to see if she was able to reach any family over there in NY. Not yet she said.

I left work that day in horror, but searching for hope. I went home and received a call from a friend from church. We were told that they were open up the church that night. Several showed up that night. We shared, sang, and prayed. We comfort one another. That night my parents came to the church and was told that they got through to my aunt who lives in Manhattan and was a witness to what had occur earlier that day. That day hearts were mended and now my aunt believe in God and goes to church, reads her Bible and pray everything. The tragedy brought my family back together again.

We almost lost two family members during that tragedy, but God was with us that day.

I will never forget that day. I will always remember that day.


Valarie Cromwell | 36 | New Jersey

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