#1492 | Tuesday, July 23rd, 2002
where was i when the world stopped you ask? i was alone at my house furious that someone that mean would do that. It was horryifying my mom toldme to watch the tv and what i saw was a fake pictur e, but it wasnt it was real life, happening here in america it was the meanest thing i can think someone would do. watched on tv and saw people mourning. On september 15 i saw it again all the rubble and all the missing people signs it was reaaly scary.that is where i was on Septemeber 11, 2001.
adam | 11 | Tennessee

#1493 | Tuesday, July 23rd, 2002
Ten months later, and still can't seem to "go on" in the same way I did before 9/11/01. For many in the New York and New Jersey area, this event will always be personal as well as a global event. For many of us, friends and loved ones were lost on that day. For many of us, more than one... in fact many.

So, even ten months later, I fear being misunderstood when reflecting on the events with people who live far away. Long distance friends view these events as events from history (to quote a 6th grade teacher of mine "the story of Man = history"), but for myself and many others they are personal history. As a teacher.

I was in New Jersey, at mass with my 5th grade class, when the silence was broken by a stream of cell phones ringing in church, people rushing toward the rear exit doors, doors slamming and the sound of their screams from outside. The impending feeling of doom entered my soul at that moment. Having to keep a state of calm amongst our students, teachers ushered the children back to class as mass ended and we received the news through hand-covered whispers from one teacher to another in the halls. I wanted to just fall down to my knees and wail.

I knew my husband was safe,instantly my thoughts went to the friends and colleagues we left behind in the towers and financial center. Just a year ago, I left 4 WTC and before that, my husband took a job in Midtown. As it turns out, our friends from the CEC at 4WTC who went onto growing firms at 1 WTC and 2 WTC were trapped from floors 72-106. Dread filled me and has still not left. Knowing what the aftermath of a bombing was like, having been in the concourse in 1994 when the WTC was first attacked, I started to relive the smells, heat, ashened air, sudden darkness, running, pushing of bodies, screams and chaos that followed that attack. Only, when I saw the first images on TV, I knew this was worse than anything I could imagine. The day was filled with attempts to contact anyone I could from the towers and financial center. All lines were dead. My husband received the last call one of his friends was able to make before his death. It was on a cell, from Tower 1 and he described how the floors around them had collapsed and the smoke and fire was going to kill them. He told him they were under the desks now because the halls were collapsing and then the words my husband is unable to stop hearing in his head "we're all going to burn to death, we're gonna die here". He has since not been able to tell any of this man's relatives that HE was the last one to speak to him, since his call was so filled with suffering and fear. I pray for him daily. None of our other friends who perished were able to MAKE a last phone call, so we will never know just how they died. In the months following Sept. 11th, the days were filled with phone calls, desparate attempts to find out if ANYONE had seen our friends after the planes hit,no success. The days and months were filled with attending memorials and masses for our lost friends, the few and the many. No one could seem to make any sense of this massive loss of young vibrant, successful, ambitious, God loving people we loved. Weeks would go by with no news and then months later we would hear of recovered tissue remains being confirmed as belonging to a friend we honored months before. Again the questions arose to all friends and family of exactly HOW he died. Did he jump, burn, suffocate, get blown apart, fall to his death with the force of explosion? All gory, all possible ways your peer left this earth. Vanished from his tiny children's lives. From his young wife's bed at night, from his parents arms. So young, you don't expect to have the bulk of your young friends taken from life in one instant at the age of 35. Those whose tissue remains were being recovered months later were believed to have been the ones who jumped or fell before the towers collapsed. Imagine being the young wife or child of this man to recieve this news and have to go through the steps to authorize it's disposal or burial after going through a memorial with no remains months earlier, trying to go on with your life to keep your children safe and calm. Nothing can describe having to say goodbye to the "missing". Parents of abducted and murdered children may know this feeling. You can't. These events have been compared to Pearl Harbor. Yes the massive death and sneak attack is a corrolation, but nothing else. These people didn't go to work that morning knowing there was a risk of being killed at work. They were not military, fighting a war against an enemy. They kissed their kids goodbye and took the train to work. They just finished their morning coffee or closed the door to the conference roon when death appeared at the door. I sound angry, I try not to be. I am a christian and a forgiver. I am just sad. Today, almost a year later, I still cry in the car, and hate to look up at planes flying across the sky.

We know peace because of our faith, but we have constant sorrow and unanswered questions, since the DOERS will never be brought to justice. What is the appropriate punishment for those who anhialate so many innocent civilians? Is there one WE could live with? None that I know. Hope is our only destiny now, hope that the WORLD has learned from these events and that LOVE will come back into our GLOBAL society. That people will STOP thinking only about themselved and be more self-LESS. The more I ponder what I could do to honor the memory of my friends the more it points to DOING, sharing of myself and my time and daily tolerance of ALL other human life.

Can you do that for them? It's not hard at all.

Those towers were a part of my life. They were erected during my early school years, an architectural success that I watched emerge from a muddy waters edge to a center of commerce which became my life as an adult. I was in awe of them always and regarded them like you would artifacts to be revered and preserved. I never dreamed as a child that I would come to work within their steel walls someday. You see, I spent most of my career in Futures working Downtown NYC until just last year. My husband and I worked together at 4 WTC for a time and I worked at 1 WTC for a time. Our adult lives revolved around the Commodities exchange business and clients within the downtown area for the last 10 years. We met and spent our first dates eating hotdogs outside the WTC, shopping the Concourse and commuting through the WTC daily whether we worked there or not.

God bless the thousands who perished that day and the millions who were left behind to mourn them. Let us carry the torch for them to the end of OUR lives, finish what they started, continue our society in a peaceful manner, with respect and love for human life. Please don't let this be over like a sad movie that you can walk out of and say "so sad for them". We are THEM, let us not forget, WE got the GIFT of life that day when the terrorists CHOSE NOT to crash into the building WE were in. Remember it could have been any of us. All of us.

Peace. Love.

Mama Seeweedz | 37 | New Jersey

#1494 | Wednesday, July 24th, 2002
Dallas, TX - The most horrifying memory I have is driving into work listening to the radio. There was a frantic caller asking Kidd Kraddick (local deejay) to confirm the flight number of the first plane that had hit the WTC....apparently she had a loved one on the flight. Usually people call radio stations around that time in the morning to win concert tickets or something.

You could tell that he had the information, but was searching for a way to tell her. I mean, how do you tell someone that live on a radio talk-show? His voice just broke a little and he said "ma'am...our prayers are with you" and she understood.

Patty | 25 | Texas

#1495 | Thursday, July 25th, 2002
Where was I? I live 2 hours north of New York City...I was working on the computer when I heard on the TV something about a plane crashing into the world trade center. As I looked in disbelief, I thought to myself what a tragic accident...then shortly later another plane crashed into the second world trade center. I was then furious and knew immediately that this was not accident. As the building collapsed I lost my station I was watching due to the antenna on the second trade center was the signal for the station. I scrambled to find another station. I called my wife at work, we all were worried,and unable to continue working for the rest of the week glued to the TV to capture every final detail of what happened, who did it and why. I am still to this day, like many people near and far, mad at those who did this.
Scott | 34 | New York

#1496 | Thursday, July 25th, 2002
I was in 2nd period, Spanish class we were taking this quiz, my teachers phone rang, she picked up, came back told us and turned the tv. I didn't believe a word, when I watched I saw bodies flying out of windows, people looking for loved ones, it hurt me alot. And just thinking about it, it hurts even more. I will never forget that day. When I got the quiz back, I made an "11" just so random that, that happened on Sept. 11th. I will keep that quiz for the rest of my life.
Gladymar | 15 | North Carolina

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