#172 | Thursday, September 27th 2001
I'm a 911 dispatcher, so i had just gotten home from my midnight shift. I was talking to one of my friends on the phone when my Dad knocked on my door saying that a plane had just hit the World Trade Center..I quickly turned on the TV only to see in horror the 2nd plane hit. I couldn't believe what i saw...Total disbelief. How could something so horrible be happening before my eyes..I was glued to the TV like every other American that day...
We've lost so many....It's hard for me to comprehend the tragedy that has occured in this country...I pray for the families of the victims, and to the fallen heros...GOD BLESS AMERICA

Mandi | 23 | Illinois

#149 | Monday, September 24th 2001
I woke up on Tuesday, September 11th TOTALLY nervous about a group presentation I had to give in my Western Traditions Class at 11:00. This was my first class, so I was just waking up when the World Trade Towers were being hit. I listen to CD's while I'm getting ready, and my dad was trying to get a new program installed on my computer, so we didn't have the news on at all. I drove the 45 minute commute to school thinking what a beautiful day it was, and how happy I was that fall was coming, and listened to CD's AGAIN, so I was still totally oblivious to the destruction and tragedy going on just hours from me. My first indication that something was wrong was when I walked into the main classroom building and noticed a bunch of secretaries/office workers huddling in the hall. I heard one of them telling the rest that the World Trade Towers had been bombed and so had the Pentagon and supposedly more buildings were targeted. At that point I thought it was just a crazy rumor until I turned the corner and saw about 50 people standing in front of the t.v. in the lobby. Many of them were crying. I stood staring at the t.v. in a state of shock, watching the images but still not comprehending that the day I had naively never believed would come was finally here. Suddenly the stupid group presentation ceased to matter in my mind, and classes were cancelled and the campus closed shortly thereafter. I drove back home, this time in a state of shock and watching the sky expecting a plane to fall on my head at any given moment. Something changed inside of me that day, something I know will never be quite the same again.
Andrea | 23 | Pennsylvania

#147 | Monday, September 24th 2001
i work in a record shop.
i have no tv or radio to amuse me, only the internet.
on the morning of september 11th i had woken up for work a lil' bt earlier than normal. i normally leave work at about 9:00 to get to work on time.
this morning, i was ready for work at about 8:40, so i decided to watch a lil' tv before i left.
i was flipping around the morning news shows from about 8:40 to 8:45 before i stumbled upon weekend at bernies 2 on comedy central. i ended up watching that piece of shit movie until about 9:05, and then left for work.
i live in new jersey, about 20 miles or some from downtown manhattan.
have you ever driven behind a filled-up dump-trunk, and felt the pebbles and rocks hit your windshield, but never seen them? i felt and heard them hit on the way to work, down i-78 to work, but didn't see any trucks.
i had arrived at work around 9:30 to the phone ringing. it was jay, one of my best friends. "jim, did you hear what happened," he asked. "no," surely this was another one of jay's pointless jokes and/or quips we normally exchange while working. "a plane just crashed into the world trade center." my heart fucking sank. was this a horrible accident? by the time i logged onto the internet to go to msnbc.com, another plane had crashed into the other tower. i started to shake and grew cold. what was going on, and what was to happen? i kept refreshing the browser to find more info, and a plane had crashed into the pentagon. the fucking pentagon? what the fuck? was this a total invasion of america, or armageddon, or a cruel nightmare? apparently, it was a lil' of all three. anyways, i spent half of the 5.5 hours i worked over at radio shack watching tv there, in shock and sickness.
i remember the bombing a few years ago, a few of the bombers had been living in my town. a friend of mine, alex had seen the fbi pull up and rush into a house, on his way to school. this totally brought me back. total fucking scary shit.
yeah.
what makes me really fucking sick though, is that these douche-bag kids were coming in looking for the new jay-z cd all day, like nothing happened! show some damn respect! and all these old guys kept coming in for the new bob dylan. who knew if the attacks were to continue? where cd's more important than their family and friends?
i left work early, and other folk i work with preferred to stay.
i don't get it.
my dad was on his way to 12th street in the city to make a delivery/pick-up. thank god there was an accident on the turnpike, which held him up enough to keep him from the city, (the holland tunnel, which he would've taken, was closed down." if i found out my dad was stranded in the city all night, i totally would've flipped-out. i would've swum across the river to get him out.
thank god for fate.
i spent most of my day getting in touch with people i knwo that live/work in the city. my cousin was trapped ovenight. my friend anthony was about 2 blocks away, on the street, when the first tower came down; he ran for his life. he thought the tower was falling over, not coming straight down.
by the end of the night, i had gotten in touch with all my friends and family, and all were safe. i know a lot of people can't say the same, and stil don't even know how/where their family is. my heart goes out to all of you.
i'm absolutely speechless.
i always condemned christianity for it's strict rules, but now i look at these extremists, and i realize, jesus might not be so bad, he doesn't make you kill innocent people.
well, i live under the flight pattern of newark, laguardia, and jfk airports, and let me say, the once monotonous roars of engines, and the rattling of windows, now fill me with fright and wonder. what will happen? anything? nothing? who knows? i sure as hell don't.
i must leave now, but i hope everyone is well, and i hope i haven't bored anyone with my story.
be well.....

jim | 23 | New Jersey

#134 | Saturday, September 22nd 2001
I thought it would be a normal day. Woke up, raced to work, poured some coffee, and sat down to start my day. Only I couldn’t. I couldn’t concentrate to save my life, neither could the woman who sits with me, or the woman across the hall from us. It was just impossible. Everyone has those days.

I was checking out the yahoo clubs that I’m in, and one of the headlines on my start page said “Plane Crashes Into World Trade Center.” I figured it was an accident, and tried to click on the headline, but it wouldn’t load. Big news, I wasn’t surprised that it wouldn’t load. But one of the messages in the club said for everyone to turn on the news. The first thing I thought was, it’s the federal government, we don’t have TVs. I was wondering what was going on, when a fourth woman who couldn’t concentrate came in the office. “I was just down in Conferencing, two planes just crashed into the World Trade Center.”

That was the end of security for me.

For the rest of the morning, we had two radios and a coworker on the phone watching CNN at home giving us information. Rumors, true stuff, we got everything. Car bomb at the State Department (not true). Bomb on the helipad of the Pentagon, which soon turned into helicopter crash, which ended up being the plane that was crashed. Airports closing, the President en route from Florida, the Capitol and White House being evacuated. I knew we’d be the next to be evacuated, so I started packing up my shit and called a friend to pick me up. More rumors start flying – the Beltway is closed, another plane was crashed, the Capitol has been blown up.

That was the beginning of terror for me.

My friends pick me up and we head back to my house, listening to the radio the whole time. Walk in the house, pour a few stiff rum and cokes. Turn on the news and wait for something else to happen – it’s noon by this time, but only 9ish on the West coast. My friends leave, and I turn on the radio as well. I turn to my favorite station, which is also a CBS affiliate, and turn on the CBS news. Every once in a while, the radio switches to a CBS feed, and the TV and radio are synchronized - the only things that made sense all day. All afternoon I have both TV and radio on, and by 8 I’ve had enough of both. I just want out. I head to the bar with a friend, where they have news on every single TV in the room. Choke down a sandwich and another rum and coke, then leave.

That was the beginning of sleeplessness for me.

Tuesday the 11th of September was the first day of the rest of my life. Washington DC, my beloved hometown, was on high alert. The military was in Delta. For the first time in my life, I was afraid to leave my house. It’s not like I haven’t experienced war before. I remember Bosnia, I remember Desert Storm and Panama. I just haven’t experienced it in my back yard.

Jenny Devil | 23 | District of Columbia

#100 | Wednesday, September 19th 2001
I woke up with a start at 8:30 AM. I was running late to pick up my friend Tammy at work and I was speeding on my way to her workplace. I hadn't been on the road for very long when the DJ on the radio broke through to announce that a passenger plane had crashed into the World Trade Center, one of the twin towers. I was shocked, I almost drove right off the road... I slowed down, and I began to think of how I had visited New York in March... Then I heard the other tower had been hit... And I started crying... And turned on the news. And when I watched various parts of footage on TV, I couldn't believe my eyes. It all seemed so unreal. To see places destroyed where I had seen in person... Very unnerving.

I now hope that whoever is responsible for this is punished. I don't want him or her to be killed outright, I would like to see him suffer. I am not a person who harbors hate easily... But this person has ruined many people's very lives, torn apart families, and thrown an entire nation into turmoil... This person needs to suffer like we all will for years to come.

What this criminal has not done was count on our entire nation pulling together in our time of need. We shall overcome... We shall not allow this nation to fall apart. We are strong.

I want to offer my sincere sympaties for all those directly or indirectly involved with this horrendous attack on our fine nation. *hugs*

Andy Hicks | 23 | Connecticut

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