#148 | Monday, September 24th 2001
we were having a get-to-know-each other group discussion during my first day of anthropology class at my new college.

i suppose sometime between nine and nine thirty a.m. a boy in my group had left to use the rest room. he came back and told my group that he heard on a t.v. in the lobby that a plane and a helicopter crashed into the world trade center. no one really thought much of it - at the time we assumed it was just one of those single engine private planes and a news helicopter or something to that effect.

about an hour later, passing professors kept knocking on our door and opening it asking our professor if "he knew what happened" and that classes were cancelled for the remainder of the day ... our concern started growing as we knew something serious had taken place in the world.

we were all growing antsy, but our professor wanted to finish up. we took about another ten minutes to wrap things up, and our professor told us that two planes had hit the world trade center and that the pentagon was on fire. we were dismissed early from class, and it was like a mad rush to the parking lots. people were still somewhat oblivious to what was going on. i got in my car and turned on 710 am i think it was, and i heard what was going on. i started to get really upset. i had a friend visiting NYC from san fransisco at the time. i was concerned that perhaps she had chosen september 11th as the day she would go sightseeing. i raced home down route 18 south in nj, where i live. i went right to my mother's work, choking back tears of concern for my friends. i was still listening to the radio trying to piece together what was going on...

i had seen a work van on my drive home from class, with a sign in the back that said something about osama bin laden and how we should unite to wipe the scum off the face of the earth. i had no clue what that meant.

i got to my mother's work and listened to the radio there. still only a few short hours after the events, details were scarce and rumours were flying. i bought two small american flags from her worked and taped one to my car antena. i spent the remainder of the day worried about my friends and family. i have relatives in pittsburgh and friends in nyc who i could not reach for days due to lack of cell phone service and what not.

what happened still hasn't hit me. perhaps because i haven't been to the city or near it since two days before the attack on the twin towers. i had spent thursday through sunday before the event in the city with friends. shopping, drinking, going to shows, etc. it scares me to think that i was there less than 48 hours before what happened...

that night i had work. reluctantly, i went in. oddly, it was busy. (i am a waitress in a coffee house.) i suppose in times of crisis people prefer to get away from it all and be together. after my shift, i went to get some cigarettes. the local paper had an extra for the first time in god knows how many years... and, for the first time that day, i saw more than what was splashed all over the t.v. i saw more than burning buildings and a smoke filled city horizon. i saw pictures of civilians like you and i, covered in soot and ash and dirt. i saw injured victims of this horrible crime. i saw tear stained cheeks and i saw mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, husbands and wives breaking down. the pictures were stomach churning. i saw rescue workers erecting in a gray scene the american flag, which boldly stood out with it's red, white and blue color scheme.

i saw america uniting.

suzanne | 19 | New Jersey

#138 | Sunday, September 23rd 2001
I was at school. I'm in the photography program at The Art Institute of Pittsburgh. I was in the basement and ran upstairs to have something printed out.
A boy ran in and said "The World Trade Center blew up!!" and everyone was all like "surrrreee, kid"

The we turned on the news and saw it was true. No feelings yet. Shock.

Back in the basement and now they're evacuating the USX Tower since the 2nd plane has hit. USX is the tallest free standing structure in Pgh.
Other photo students run outside to take pictures of the evacuation.

Then the plane crashes in Sommerset, PA.

Now our school is being evacuated.

I am walking across the Smithfield St. Bridge and realizing how Pgh. is very similar to Manhatten in it's geographical setup.
A peninsula which is only accessible by bridges and one north location.

It is silent. A mass exodus away from downtown and it is silent.

I watch the news for the next 4 days 24 hours a day.

Those images play over and over in my head.

Jill Tomaszewski | 19 | Pennsylvania

#135 | Saturday, September 22nd 2001
Where was I? I was sitting on my bed in my dorm room at OU completely freaking out. Panicking even.

My phone rang at about 9:30 AM or so that tuesday morning, and grumbling, i rolled out of bed to answer it, and was was taken by suprise by my mom's shakey voice asking if id heard. She told me that 2 planes had crashed into the world trade center and that hundreds of people had died. All i could say was "oh my god" as i ran over to my television to turn it on. in a panic, i fumbled with the controls to turn to CNN. As i was trying to work the TV in my half-asleep bewildered state my mom tells me shed just found out they hit the pentagon too. at that there was nothing i could do but start sobbing on my bed... came pretty close to losing it. Then i suddenly thought of my boyfriend... who lives in dallas, but i had this instinct to see if he was okay. couldnt find his phone number, took forever to get ahold of him in my panic. I looked out my window at people, unknowing, laughing groggily and walking to class, and it made me angry. ran upstairs to wake sarah up just in time to see the buildings collapse.

it was certainly the worst feelings of terror and grief ive ever felt.

Jennifer | 19 | Oklahoma

#130 | Saturday, September 22nd 2001
i was asleep.
my phone rang.
not more bad news, please.
'sally, you need to go around the hall and make sure everyone's okay.'
sleep-induced haze...'wha?'
'haven't you heard?'
whispers in the sound of silence.

sally batson | 19 | South Carolina

#119 | Friday, September 21st 2001
I awoke that morning in my usual ignorant state of bliss. I didn't have class until around two o'clock that day so as usual I was milking all the extra sleeping time that I could. At around eleven I went on to my computer and logged to AOL Instant Messenger. One of my friends from home came on and told me that the end of the world was happening. As usual I figured he was kidding so I replied with, "cool how can I be a part of it." Little did I know that two planes had crashed into the two beautiful towers in the city that I had spent so many days and nights in. I quickly turned on the news and what I saw I could never have been prepared for. It was horrible. The video of the planes crashing into the building just kept being played over and over again. I still can see those videos when I close my eyes. It is a scar that will ne forever in mine mind. That night as reports started coming in of all the missing people I didn't know what to do. I sat in my bedroom and cried. I cried for hours on end just thinking of all the mothers and fathers who had been lost. Thinking of families all over the state, families which were now missing a key person in their lives. I thought of all that and I cried.
Jonathan Kelly | 19 | New York

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