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09-12-2020 02:08 AM
I would wonder for those who jumped, was it a conscience decision to do so, or were they do filled with terror, that they didn't realize what they were doing?
As to the people who jumped, those were folks that were in floors that were on fire, and rather than being burned, they jumped. That is known from phone calls. I can't imagine.
That morning I was trying to get to work, not feeling so great because I had recently had some surgery, but since I had used all my time off and had none, I set off to work. I had the news on as I was getting ready for work, when the first plane flew into the buildings, and the report was that it was a small plane, and probably an accident. As I walked out the door and turned off the TV, they were saying a second plane had flown into the second tower. I was late to work so I just rushed into the subway which was still operating. If it was 2 planes, it couln't be an accident, right, is all I am thinking. My job, a government office, was a few blocks north of the Towers. I tried to ask the people on the subway what was going on, but no one knew. (I could see the buildings on fire from the park where my subway station was, but since I was late I did not stop to watch and just went in.) I got off the subway and started walking towards my office, a little closer than the towers, and everyone was walking in the opposite direction and a few of us were walking in the direction of the towers. It felt like a disaster movie where I was making the wrong decision. I could not see the towers from my vantage point, because of the buildings between where I was and the towers, and the area, though all paved, is hilly. All of a sudden people start stampeding, no one will stop to tell me why, I picked up a payphone (remember those) to call my boss to tell her I was not coming in. I later found out my building have been evacuated and the employees dismissed for the day, but I didn't know. As I am on the phone, I hear boom, boom, boom... At the time I thought explosions, but now I believe it was the floors of the tower, pancaking on each other. I tried to ask what was going on, no one would tell me, they were running for their lives. I look up and see the sky, full of dark orange clouds, headed in my direction. I grew up Catholic and I thought it was the end of the world, the wrath of God. Not kidding you, I started praying. I turn around to go home, the subways are closed, the buses are full, so I walk, about 50 mins. I was in pain since I was recovering from surgery. I see people clustered around cars with the radios on along the way, and I stop to listen to see if I can find out what happened, but the people were cursing out arabs, and I have been told I look middle eastern (I'm not). So I keep moving. 2 blocks from home I stopped by a drug/convenience store, and they had the radio on, and that is how I found out what had happened. I get home to a call from my sister in another state, relieved to catch me, who wisely told me to go to the store and get some food, which I did. I was numb. My grocery store is by that same park where I caught the subway and saw the towers burning, now ony dark smoke. That is Union Square/14th Street, for those of you who know NYC. They had closed Manhattan below 14th Street, and it felt that this is where the world ended. I had never had such fear in my life. I went home to take a shower and found out my whole body was black and blue. No idea how that happened. I was then glued to the TV for a few weeks until my job reopened. They were trying to recover survivors from the rubble, and I was praying every night that they would. But they never recovered anyone after that first day. It was a terror, indeed.
God bless us all.
09-12-2020 06:14 AM
My memories are fairly surreal.
DH & I were on the Grand Princess sailing to the Western Caribbean for our 2nd anniversary. (We weren't youngsters, we married at 46.) Went to breakfast, returned to our room where the room steward was finishing up.
He asked if we had heard of the plane hitting the World Trade Center - we had no idea. Quickly turned on the TV and were equally horrified and shocked to discover it wasn't just a small plane accident when the 2nd plane hit the other tower. Spent the rest of the morning & afternoon watching TV.
Late afternoon we wandered down to what was a sports bar, thinking they had TV and some human companionship. A lone gentleman was at the bar. Struck up a conversation (he was from Canada, which is a "neighbor" of our home state of Michigan.) He offered his condolences and asked "What's the world coming to?"
It was the most subdued cruise, rightfully so, I'd ever been on. Few people about and they were murmering.
I was thankful I'd added international access to my early cellphone (due to two elderly mothers) but there was no ship-to-shore cellphone access back then until we hit an island. Wanted to leave the direct ship-to-shore access to passengers from NY, VA, PA, etc.
Every year, I say a little prayer for all the victims, famililies, 1st responders/families, etc. hoping we don't go through this again.
Don't know if ya'll are aware, but the actor Steve Buscemi was a Manhattan fireman for 4 years. When he heard, he gathered his gear and joined his old buddies to work 12 hr. shifts to seach for survivors. I like that story.
09-12-2020 08:10 AM
I live in the central states and worked in a large office building where everyone had their own private office. No TV's, few radios. One of my co-workers passed me in the hall and asked if I'd heard anything about a plane hitting a building in NYC. No, I hadn't. At that moment in time, we just thought some plane had accidentally crashed into a skyscraper. It was over an hour before we all realized what was really going on. I watched it all replayed on TV when I got home that night -- didn't sleep, just watched. Couldn't look away.
09-12-2020 08:31 AM
On 9/11/2001 I was at work in the Federal Bldg. Our group had a meeting that morning and when we returned to the office, everyone was talking about what happened. At that point, it was assumed to be an accident and only the South Tower had been hit. When I got to my desk, the phone was ringing; my son called. He was an investment banker in NYC. His office was on 57th & Park Ave. He could see the WTC from his office window plus he had the TV on in his office. While he was describing what was going on, the second plane hit, He actually saw it!. The most frightening thing was that every other Tuesday he went to San Francisco for a meeting as that was his company's home office. He could have been on one of the planes. I can't describe the emotions that I felt. My son said the news was reporting that a 3rd plane had hit the Pentagon and a 4th plane had crashed near Shanksville, Pa. I freaked because my brother was a civilian employee at the Pentagon. Just then, alarms in our building started to go off and we were evacuated and I had to hang up quickly. I worked on the 14th floor and had to walk down the stairs as the elevators don't work in an emergency. Everyone moved rapidly and nobody spoke. We were told to get away from the building in case we were also a target. I tried to call my brother all day but all the circuits to DC were jammed; finally at about 3 PM he called me. My brother and I don't have the best relationship, but I was never so relieved and so glad to hear his voice as I was that day. He had left his office 15 minutes before the plane hit and was in a different area of the building. The plane hit the wing where his office was. Thank goodness for government's fondness for meetings because he might have been seriously injured or killed. He lived in Arlington, about 5 miles from work and he said just started walking. He was in a daze and didn't even realize how far he had walked until he saw his house.
I will never forget that day. When I watch the memorials and see the family members of those who died I thank G-d because I could have lost my son and my brother on that horrible day.
There is a whole generation that has wasn't even born yet and can never understand how truly horrible 9/11 was. That's why it's important to remember it every year in spite of the element in this country that wants to erase our history.
09-12-2020 09:08 AM - edited 09-12-2020 10:30 AM
I remember thinking the first plane was a horrible accident. Then the second plane hit and I called DH at work.
Then reports were coming in about the Pentagon and PA.
Although NYC was the first and scenes from there were more dominant, my thoughts were with all those who experienced that last horror knowing their time was at end.
I also remember a bit about the towers-how the workers in wheelchairs went to the staging area designed for them. And nobody came.
I remember a Muslim man telling how a Jewish man helped him up outside and walked with him.
All the scenes of jumpers, fires, the Pentagon damage, the field in Shanksville-those are seared in my mind, too.
Yet I will say this-the unity, the flags, the pride in being an American (yes, I know people from other countries also perished) but for that time we didn't have gender, age, race, religion, etc.
We had America.
So while I despise what is going on currently, those persons are not our future. Those persons will never tear down our foundations, our rights, our unity.
I believe in the goodness of the majority, not the ignorance of the minority who feel tearing down a statue makes a better USA. All this will pass.
It is up to all of us to continue the lesson 9/11 taught all of us-that we are one, undivided, and nobody will ever take that away from us.
Never back down, never give up. Have hope that we will rise above every time no matter who tries to keep us down. They will not win.
Our future is hopeful; I believe that with all my heart.
There is nowhere else I'd rather be; this is my country, everyone my people, and yes, my flag.
Bless all the victims and their families; bless those who strive to keep the ideal of the USA alive; and bestow on all of us the peace and initiative to work together in unity and with respect.
The Universe does not pick and choose; neither should we.
In the end, we are all in the same boat, just with a diverse crew.
09-12-2020 09:10 AM
I was at home. I had my ironing board up in front of the tv ironing clothes. When the first plane hit I said "Is this for real." When the second plane hit I knew it was. I froze in shock. My stomach started hurting and my heart started racing. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. And the other planes that crashed. I started crying for all those people and their families. And I still cry for them. I'll never forget that day. Never.
09-12-2020 10:16 AM - edited 09-12-2020 10:18 AM
I was still working then. Someone had brought in a t.v., since at work we hadn't heard about it yet. As the announcer was talking, the most unbelieveable words came out of his mouth. We had been attacked. I could not comprehend what he was saying about terrorists attacking. It was just too unbelievable. The horror we were seeing every time they replayed what had happened, just shocked the heck out of me. My mind was shouting, no this doesn't happen to us.
Well, we know better now. Shocking things do happen to our country. Sadly.
@StylishLady I'd add to your list, this virus.
09-12-2020 11:08 AM - edited 09-12-2020 11:14 AM
I was the Municipal Prosecutor for a Town near the Lincoln Tunnel on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River. I was getting ready to go into the courtroom to begin my day. I looked out one of the windows in the office and saw the beautiful blue sky. By the time I walk by the second window..... only a couple few away.... I looked out the window again and saw smoke coming out of one of the towers. I immediately thought that was no accident and not a small plane that had flown into the Tower. When the second plane hit I knew I was right. That entire day was surreal. All the port authority cops I worked with had to leave immediately to head over to ground zero. The judge made us proceed with Court even with everything that was going on. I finally put my foot down and said I was not going to proceed with any trials ..... I was much too upset knowing buildings were falling down, people were dying and Police Officers I worked with were in those buildings. I lost two friends that day: PO John Skala and PO Alfonso Niedermeyer, both Port Authority Police Officers. I remember looking down at the Lincoln Tunnel Toll Plaza which was completely deserted. Never saw anything like that. I will never forget that dreadful day.
09-12-2020 11:21 AM
@qualitygal I couldn't agree with you more about the virus, and the horror it has brought us. 9/11 was a horror, but it brought everyone together. Today, the terror of the pandemic is being used to divide us, but there is also so many good people. I do live in NYC and remain largely at home since early March, when everything started closing. Just walking to the stores for essentials within a few blocks of my NYC home. In late May or June I found myself out of breath walking the few blocks and I just thought I was really out of shape for staying in my small apartment all the time. I always used to walk a fair amount. Now, I had to stop to catch my breath, and people, New Yorkers, because that is all that was around then (NYC was super empty) would stop and ask me if I was OK, to which I always said yes, I just needed a minute. We all had our masks on. Eventually I came to realize I had Covid-19, the symptoms just developed in slow motion and I never got tested, but I feel fairly certain. I have yet to go to the doctor because the pandemic has terrorized me too. But at this time when the pandemic and all that is happpening is being used to terrorize us, I will not forget the kindness of the folks that stopped to help me when I was out of breath, a clear Covid symptom which I didn't realize I had because the whole thing has been disorienting. These are unusual times.
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