#1543 | Wednesday, August 14th, 2002
This happened on one of my off days (Tuesday and Wednesday are my days off), and I was watching stupid daytime television (the Judge Mathis Show), when one of those scrolling notes came on at the bottom of the screen, saying a plane had crashed into one of the towers and to switch to a different channel for the news. I switched to CNN. At the time, people still thought this was an accident. I woke up my husband (he works at night, so he was still asleep at the time) and we watched the second plane crash into the other building LIVE. As soon as I heard a plane had hit the Pentagon, I contacted my place of work (Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC) to see if they needed people to come in and help with the casualties, but I was told they had everything under control and I probably wouldn't make it through the traffic anyway.
Chris | 22 | Maryland

#1544 | Wednesday, August 14th, 2002
On September 11th, 2001, I was at work. I was the only one in the office when it began. My boss called and said that he heard on the radio that a plane accidently flew into one of the Twin Towers. I immediately turned on the television. Then my world came crashing down. I watched in horror as the nightmare began. To this day, I still cry and get goose bumps when I think about it. I am over the nightmares now, but they return once and awhile. It really touched home because my husband is a police officer and many friends work for the fire department. I know what the rescue personnel had to go through in an emergency. They truley are heros. We will never forget and we will get revenge. I AM PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN!
Angela Combs | 23 | Georgia

#1545 | Wednesday, August 14th, 2002
I live in Rockford, IL, so basically, that's where I was on September 11th.
I took my daughter to school, and when I got home, my husband said "Someone just crashed a plane into the World Trade Center!" so I pondered the reasons for it. Was it an accident? Was it a terrorist?
As we watched the morning news some more, the second plane hit. Then we both agreed that it was no accident.
I remember when the 3rd plane hit, as well. The news anchor was in the building and said everyone was being exacuated. I wasn't sure if I should pick my daughter up from school, but then I figured that would be a very unlikely target.
I remember seeing the people dancing in the streets of Bethlehem. That was very sad.
I had a friend here from Australia, and I was worried that she might have been on one of the planes, so I tried and tried to contact her, with no luck. I found myself glued to the TV for a week, waiting for word and for new developments. I wasn't scared to leave, but I was too pregnant to give blood, I didn't have the energy to go to prayer vigils....I just sat there and watched TV. I also did a lot of crying that week.
Carla Heidenreich | 23 | Illinois

#1546 | Wednesday, August 14th, 2002
Well it was a very quiet and silent morning. I was about to take my class, we where waiting for the teacher. I've heard many people talking at the same time outside the classroom, but i didn't pay too much attention. Then our teacher enters crying and very shocked, she told us that some airplane crashed on one of the towers. The students and myself were thinking it was some accident. We started our class, then someone called a student on the cell phone and told that another airplane crashed the second tower and one of them collapsed. And that another plane was hijacked and no one knows where the airplane was. We were shocked and afraid. One of my buddies starts crying because a relative works there. We started to pray. But we were so afraid that we couldn't continue the class and the teacher told us to leave
Maria Gandia | 22 | Puerto Rico

#1547 | Thursday, August 15th, 2002
Later that day on September 11th I found out the buildings were being attacked while I watched the sun rise over the Grand Canyon. I was on vacation with my boyfriend. The sun slowly rose as tourists from all over the world stood around us watching in silent awe. During this beautiful display I thought as a lifelong Bostonian how the West had it's own kind of 'American history': the land. The gorgeous ancient rocks, mountains, and water and looming skies which I marvelled at each morning and night. There was a deep sense of my mortality under the black skies of night in Arizona where one could see billions of stars and barely any rocks a few feet ahead of you, the land is so dark at night. There were no clustered New England trees to hide under. Just the giant timeless sky. I felt so small. And so on what was a peaceful moment for us in the West watching that sunrise back home hell had broken loose for the country, and in many ways the world at large.

I found out about the actual WTC & Pentagon attacks and casulties upon hiking back up the Grand canyon to the hotel. (You climb down into the Canyon to begin the hike and you hike backup to end it). I had a feeling of connection to nature and a slight euphoric feeling from the hiking. That soon came to an end as the woman in the little bookshop by the edge of the Canyon informed me of what had happened. She began to cry and said "I have to tell you something but I don't know how to begin. This feels like a movie. You may not believe it at first but it is the truth. It's on the news. MY family back in NYC have confirmed this. We are under attack."


"America is under attack. The WTC buildings are gone. Blown up. Destroyed. The Penagon is hit pretty badly. People are missing and dead."

I was in shock. One sentence kept repeating itself in my head. This is unreal. This is unreal. I had to get to the hotel room and look at the news!

I left and walked halfway to my room. I could hear the mumblings of shock, dismay and the numb discussion of the events from everyone around me. You could tell the Americans apart from the Europeans and others because we looked the most wounded - or the most angry. Eventually most people, regardless of country of origin milled around in the coming days with mutual horror and indignation.

I never cry in public. But I could not get to the room in time. I broke down in a flash of anger, then despair and my body was wracked with sobs. I felt complete sorrow and had the thought 'how can my generation (twenty somethings) deal with something like this? Vietnam is so far removed, the Gulf War and Kosovo something that seemed almost like a world a part from us. Not some huge war like I or II or Korea. Who did this? And when will the next attack come? And back home in Boston and NYC - are my loved ones okay? What is happening???'

I had the funny feeling of being prepared to 'join up' in a war effort if I had to (like something out of the day after Pearl Harbor was attacked) and I am an artist and pretty liberal type person. I was shellshocked for many days. And it was hell being so far from Back East. Ofcourse the rest of my vacation was half spent watching the repeat news reels of Sept 11th. Hungry for any bit of information. Dismayed at the wreckage, the victims, the fact that some of the planes left out of Boston Logan airport, the place I had flown to Arizona from (on a California flight, like the Sept 11th planes) and how chilling it was that I could have been on that plane had I not had to change the dates of my tickets).

The sight of those huge structures going down and the people jumping and falling to their deaths was so frightening. I knew there was death and hate and war since the dawn of civilization but to be attacked on our own ground in the 21st century I think was a brutal shock to a great deal of us. Especially the younger generation, brought up with mind numbing commercialism, consumerism and an overwhelming relience upon technology and with a false sense of comfort.

In any event we still feel the loss and the cut in this country and abroad (I was very touched by so many tributes from so many countries) but it fades with time. We won't forget, no. But we have no choice but to live now.

Rebecca-Starr Price | 26 | Massachusetts

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