#404 | Sunday, December 9th 2001
Since my college calculus III class is on Tuesdays and Thursdays, I was getting ready for school. I take the public bus usually and I always leave around 9:45 am for the 10 o'clock one. Before then, I always have CNN on. I was watching the Headline news version where they said something about we are now getting reports of a fire in one of the towers of the World Trade Center. Then, I switched to the regular CNN channel and saw the whole thing unfold as we know what happened. A little while later, since we weren't sure as to if there would be class, my Mother took me to the college, on the way there, looking for the best vantage point to see the towers from where we live (half hour or so from NYC in NJ). We had the radio on for this time and heard the towers collapsed and the Pentagon was hit and everything else that happened. Class was cancelled, as they were closing the campus; took a while to get home because everyone was apparently going home, and just was glued to the television after that.
Lois Merritt | 24 | New Jersey

#382 | Saturday, December 8th 2001
I was at the post office getting ready to ship something out to someone on eBay. My wife called me on my cellular phone and was crying - I thought she was going to be kidding around about something one of our young sons had done. I'll never forget her words, "Something really horrible just happened." At the time I didn't realize the magnitude of what had happened and thought it was an isolated incident. Reports were still sketchy about planes still in the air and the second WTC tower explosion (not sure if it had even happened yet). I'm not sure if even the terrorist organization realized what they had done. Thank goodness that as I write this they are on their way out.

I wish all people could understand that your rights end where mine begin. You have the right to love me, the right to hate me, but not the right to hurt or kill me. Ah, that simple Golden rule: Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.

Dean Truax | 24 | Washington

#333 | Saturday, December 8th 2001
That was the day I got out of the Army! I was at home in bed, finishing up my terminal leave.
Chad L. Hutson | 24 | Oregon

#318 | Saturday, December 8th 2001
September 11th, 2001 was my 24th birthday...

Every year for the last 6 years that I have been out on my own, I have rewarded myself with a day off on my birthday. In 2001, since my birthday landed on a Tuesday, I decided to take Monday off and work on Tuesday.

I returned to the office bright and early Tuesday morning, slightly sunburned from the day my hubby and I spent at Islands of Adventure in the nearby city of Orlando, FL. I was relaxed and cheerful, ready to start my 24th year on this earth.

None of my coworkers knew it was my birthday. I am a private person and hate all the fuss that they make over personal holidays. They just thought that I took a vacation day to relax from a stressful job.

At 8:30 that morning, I entered a departmental meeting that was scheduled to last until almost lunchtime. We were in the middle of the meeting, discussing some trivial company matter, when a coworker opened the door to the conference room door, without knocking, and told us the news in a very hushed voice.

"Just thought you guys should know since you're been stuck in there. A plane just hit one of the World Trade Center towers."

Everyone in the meeting froze and we looked at one another in shock. As you can guess, the meeting ended instantly as coworkers ran to their offices to call relatives. I called home to my husband, who was on vacation from his state job, and told him what happened and to turn on the news.

In the distance, I could hear the TV in the lobby being turned on and the news broadcast, staticy as it was, was turned up for the whole building to hear. As the news spread, a group of people started to gather around the TV, trying to decifer what was going on from the static filled pictures that played before them.

I called my best friend in California on my cell phone as I watched the story unfold before me on the TV screen. We were both shell shocked and we consoled one another for a few moments. Before hanging up....

I sat in one of the chairs in the lobby, watching the TV and shaking my head.

What a way to celebrate my 24th birthday...

God bless America...

Anita Keller | 24 | Florida

#270 | Wednesday, November 21st 2001
I remember this day better than most. I was to meet up with Finnish rock band, 22 Pistepirkko, who came to Denmark on a press promotion tour that day. I had breakfast and talked about the day's plans and what had happened since the last time we'd met.

Later, when it was time to meet the press, we were at a bar, where the owner is a friend of mine. The bar was closed to anyone but us, to allow some silence for the interviews. I was there with the other people hosting the band, the record company rep, the journalists etc. Then my cellphone rang.

It was my good friend and neighbor who called, and all he said was, that two airplanes had just hit TWC. I was as shocked as anyone, not really believing it at first.

I quickly whispered the news to the other people there, except the band members. We decided that they would be better off not knowing, at least until the interviews were over.

When they were, we told them. There was to be a promotion concert that night. We talked long about cancelling, but decided not to, which was good. The people at the concert were all sad, shocked and not really in the mood for live rock and roll. However, the music seemed to relieve us all of the thoughts and fears for a while. It had an instant therapeutic effect. Of course it didn't last long, and in the weeks that followed, the horror returned.

Rasmus Rasmussen | 24 | Denmark

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