#1482 | Wednesday, July 17th, 2002
When I heard the devastating news, I went to the airport and handed out rosaries with my family.
Lucy | 15 | Arkansas

#1483 | Wednesday, July 17th, 2002
9-11-01 Me and my husband was on a flight (AirTran) FLT 278 out of Atlanta, GA to Boston, MA. Our flight took off at 8:30am and was to land at 11:05am. We were over Baltimore, MD (in the air) when the Pilot came on and informed us that "we were turning around and going back to Atlanta" I looked at my husband and asked if was joking? He assured me that he was. Then the Pilot came on again and said "We are making an immediate landing" "All air space has been closed due to a disaster in New York City something to do with airplanes and that we would see it on the news tonight"... That's all he said. I was scared and started shaking thinking that airplanes were being shot out of the air. Finally we landed in New Port News, VA. Once we landed a passenger pulled out his palm pilot and started reading out load that "both Twin Towers had been hit, and the Pentagon had also just been hit". The plane was quite this entire time. Once we got off the plane inside the airport, they insisted that we check out and no one was allowed to roam or use the bathrooms. Once we had a chance to see the TV monitors in the airport, we were all shocked. All I could think about was all the people on the air planes and in the buildings. Copies of both plane tickets and Hertz rental available on request. LosingSleep2@cox.net

Michelle Rooney | 28 | Georgia

#1484 | Wednesday, July 17th, 2002
I was at work preparing to teach a prenatal exercise class. It was the first day of a new class session, and I was looking forward to meeting my new students.

A co-worker approached me and said that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center Towers. I didn't believe him. My immediate thought was of an amateur pilot losing his or her way, an accident. As I walked from the pool area to the front office of our facility,another co-worker approached me and said that two planes had hit the World Trade Center buildings. I remember thinking of the kid's game we used to play called "gossip." One person whispered a message, and the message would be repeated down the line of kids with the last in line repeating what they heard. The end result was never the same as the beginning message.

Walking through the club almost everyone I met either asked if I had heard the news, or gave me another piece of information. I started to feel a little afraid because each bit of news made me realize we were dealing with something more than pilot error. Although my husband's office is located in midtown Manhattan, I decided to call him. I was unsuccessful reaching him on his cell phone.
To my great relief he answered his office phone immediately. He said they had no cell service, no television, and could only receive incoming calls on their land line phones. His office was gathering information via the radio, and from whatever people were telling them via phone. I asked him to come home, but he said he felt he should stay put until they had a better idea of what was happening. This was at around 9:50 a.m. I had no choice but to teach my class. Only one student showed up. It was the longest hour of my life.

At the close of instruction at 11:00 a.m., I phoned home to check my answering machine. There were messages from our relatives in Califorina, and a heart-breaking message from our twelve year old son calling from school to inquire about his dad. I couldn't get through to the school via phone, so I raced across town to see him. There was almost no traffic, and my foreboding grew. The school hallways were eerily silent, and the hall in front of the administration office was filled with parents waiting to check their kids out for the day. A police officer was onsite with our school's social worker to calm frayed nerves.

I stood in the hallway waiting for my son to arrive from class. He had been summoned by the social worker, and it occurred to me that he might think something terrible had happened. The minute I saw him walk out of the classroom, I started doing jumping jacks in the middle of the school hallway to let him know that the news was GOOD. He said, with more than a little false bravado, " I knew Dad was okay. I know I sounded kind of scared on the answering machine,
but I really wasn't." I replied, "You are much braver than I am because I was scared to tears!" He wanted to come home, but I told him it was better to stay at school and try to keep a routine. I did not tell him that I preferred that he not observe me freaking out the rest of the day until his father returned home. It is an hour drive from
NYC, and there are many waterway bridges to cross on the route. We had no idea of what, if anything, to expect next.

I spent the rest of the day phoning relatives, and keeping them up-to-date as to my husband's progress home. I was glued to CNN. My husband drove home with two other co-workers who live in the area. He arrived at 4:30 p.m. Television service had been knocked out in the city almost immediately, and he had not seen any images of the disaster. I observed him watch the seemingly endless film loop of the planes hitting the Towers, the collapse of the Towers, the reactions of the people in the immediate area, and worst of all, the footage of the people trapped in the buildings jumping from the windows as their last resort. My kind, strong, brave husband sank lower and lower into our couch and cried
soundless tears. I cried with him,not only for the innocent victims, but because I knew I was one of the lucky ones. My loved one returned home safely from the city that day. Grief and joy are an incongruous mix, and it was a mix we sadly became all too familiar with in the following weeks.
Suzanne | 45 | Connecticut

#1485 | Wednesday, July 17th, 2002
I, like many other Americans, lived with the fantasy belief that nothing could hurt us. We are the USA. We were safe. We didn’t go to bed, as people in other countries do, afraid of what would happen during the night. We were the ideal to which everyone aspired. Oh, sure we argued among ourselves. But this is America. We were untouchable. No one would dare attack us.

That fantasy ended on September 11th when the unthinkable happened and we WERE attacked. We weren’t targeted for this violation during an act of war. That might have been understandable. This was a vicious, unprovoked assault on civilians. And suddenly we were at war. My only thoughts about war IN this country, ON our shores, were from stories told by my parents. This is a completely new reality for me.

I was on the 22nd floor of Trinity Church and watched BOTH planes hit the towers. I knew we had been attacked and that nothing would ever be the same again. I managed to contact my 80 year old mother and my 26 year old son before the phones went dead. It took me about 6 hours to finally get me and my bleeding feet back to Brooklyn and into the nearest bar.

I knew the dust and ash I carried on my body that day were, in all likelihood, the cremated remains of people lost. I knew I was going to die and although I still breathe and my heart still beats, part of me DID die that day. Although I didn't lose a family member in this unprovoked attack, I lost other less tangible things. I lost my job that day and more than 10 months later have been unable to find another. I can't bring myself to don the outfit or shoes I wore that day. I lost my spirit and part of my soul.

I tell people, when I can bring myself to discuss it at all, is that I think the almost 3000 people who died that day might have been the lucky ones. Those of us who remain are still trying to find ways to deal with the horror, the anger, the frustration, the fear, and the knowledge that we will be attacked again. The only question is when. I look to the sky and no longer see planes. I see potential missiles. I no longer look at the sky and see orange and red sunsets as kaleidoscope colors. I see blood. Gray clouds are now visible reminders of that horrible day. I’ll never forget the smell that day. Now sounds of planes overhead and the rumble of subways below remind me of the attack. My dreams, although less frequent than before, remain just as vivid.

I’ve spent a lot of time trying to come to terms with this new reality. I was angry. And scared. I still am. I go to bed worried about what will happen as I sleep. I wake and turn on the television with a sense of dread about what might have happened while I slept. If the first image I see on television in the morning is some inane commercial then I know, at least for the moment, we’re OK.

The President tells us “get back to normal”. What does that mean? How do we get back to normal when the entire definition of normal has changed? I trust my government to do what is right and protect us from future acts of barbarism but I’m having trouble balancing that trust with the fear that is still with me. Is this rational? ‘Experts’ say yes. Should I seek counseling? Maybe, but with no job there is also no health insurance.
So what do I do? I look for another job. And I spend time with my 80 year old mother. We talk. We laugh. And I am getting to know her. I’m getting to know me through her. I’m learning about American History at her feet and through her eyes. Now, and forever more, I have my fingernails polished with red white and blue designs. Someone told me she thought it was time for me to stop this display of personal patriotism. My reply was, NEVER. My fingernails are red white and blue memorials to 3000 people who did nothing more than go to work on a sunny Tuesday morning. And red white and blue is what they will remain … until they put me in the ground and I join my brother and sister NYers at heaven's door.
D. Dupont-Day | 47 | New York

#1486 | Wednesday, July 17th, 2002
I was on my rooftop in carroll gardens, brooklyn. I saw the 2nd plane hit and everything fall. Living in NYC and seeing this first hand was pretty rough.

I have images of it.

I can't post them here, but if you want to see, email me @ jeffrey@brainware3000.com
Jeffrey | 26 | New York

<< | < | showing 1482-1486 of 2527 | > | >>

view / browse

link us

website: wherewereyou.org | contact: wwyproject@yahoo.com
All entries are copyright their original authors.