Author Topic: My personal memory of 9-11.  (Read 10576 times)

Marshal Halloway

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My personal memory of 9-11.
« on: September 06, 2011, 11:29:02 PM »



This week, Down Range Radio is all dedicated to the September 11 attacks, a series of four coordinated suicide attacks against the United States in 2001.

http://www.downrange.tv/blog/down-range-radio-229-the-10th-anniversary-of-9-11/11414/

Ten years later, many Americans still remember clearly the unfolding of horrible events on that day. Planes flying into the World Trade Center; people jumping out of windows more than 100 stories high; thousands of civilians fleeing out of downtown Manhattan by foot: These kinds of images are hard to forget.

Michael Bane went to New York just days after the attack to visit an old friend and to check on a building close to WTC where he used to live. He takes you on a painful, personal and emotional journey back to the chaos after the attack.

In the midst of tragic events, people often say that the world will never be the same again. But as years go by, daily life goes back to normal for most people. The history is still written about 9-11, many questions are still unanswered, but what we all remember is what we did and how we felt on that particular day.

My story is not as dramatic and up close as Michael's. I was living in Norway at the time and on 9-11-01, I was in my office writing articles for a gun magazine. I had no TV on, just some music in the background. In the afternoon local time, I needed to take a break from the computer and decided to visit a friend of mine, a local gunsmith. When I walked into his shop, he was sitting at his bench staring at the TV set on the wall. He looked at me and said that an idiot had just crashed into the World Trade Center. I told him to change over to CNN and minutes later we saw the second plane hit its target and the rest of that day was spent in front of the TV and many hours in the days to come.

Feel free to share you story and thoughts from that day....



 

Big Frank

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #1 on: September 07, 2011, 01:17:54 AM »
I was getting ready to go to a concealed pistol license class when I heard about it on the radio. I grabbed an AR-15 and some ammo and threw them in the truck. I knew when the second plane hit that it wasn't an accident. I didn't know if we were being invaded or what was going on, but I wasn't going down without a fight.  We had our CPL class anyway and life seemed almost normal.
""It may be laid down as a primary position, and the basis of our system, that every Citizen who enjoys the protection of a free Government, owes not only a proportion of his property, but even his personal services to the defence of it, and consequently that the Citizens of America (with a few legal and official exceptions) from 18 to 50 Years of Age should be borne on the Militia Rolls, provided with uniform Arms, and so far accustomed to the use of them, that the Total strength of the Country might be called forth at a Short Notice on any very interesting Emergency." - George Washington. Letter to Alexander Hamilton, Friday, May 02, 1783

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ronlarimer

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #2 on: September 07, 2011, 08:31:30 AM »
Ten years ago, I was a 24yo management consultant working a at the billing center for Qwest Communications when I heard that a plane had hit the 1st tower.  I immediately began combing the news sites for details and information and passing it on to the 100 or so people in the building. Once the 2nd tower was hut it became clear this was no accident the office was evacuated, we we sitting on the main communication backbone for our part of the country, and like most of the "non-essential" people in the building I began to pack up, but before I left the buildings began to fall.  Most of us then became glued to my computer as the articles and videos became available.  Co-workers were calling friends and family to verify they were ok and I sat thankful that no one I knew was in New York.

My task on this project was mapping the network and to verify billing for the provided services was turned on and I started thinking about all of the accounts that I had reviewed in the previous weeks with world trade center addresses and how the people that had been opening the bills we were generating may have been killed.  I didn't know anyone in New York but I did have a connection, however small and distant.  Then I had a sickening feeling, tomorrow bills are going to be printed and sent for phone service to a building that no longer existed, for phones that no longer would ring, that belonged to people that may have been killed and someone that knew those people, a co-worker or boss, would have to open the letter and see the names and phone numbers of people that had been lost.

I asked the billing director if I could turn off the billing for every circuit running through the damaged buildings so that small bit of pain could be avoided.  As people left due to evacuation, myself and 2 fellow consultants combed the web looking for details on the damage so that we could turn off circuits and billing.  Sometimes I wonder how many other companies did small things like this, that were never publicized, to do what they could from where the were?
Ron

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tombogan03884

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #3 on: September 07, 2011, 10:00:43 AM »
On Sept 10th 2001 I was driving near Pease tradeport in Portsmouth NH toward I 95, the interstate that link Portland Me with Boston. Near the intersection I passed a small blue car that caught my eye because the to "Mediterranean looking" men in it just didn't look right, their demeanor just didn't match people in surrounding vehicles, the passenger seemed like he was royally PO'd, and they were ignoring each other. Had they been male and female I would have assumed "domestic dispute".
The next morning my clock radio woke me with something about the WTC,  I couldn't figure out wtf they were talking about so I turned on CNN just in time to see the 2nd plane hit.
When they later posted pictures of the highjackers  I recognized the passenger of the car that had caught my eye, it was Mohamad Atta.

PegLeg45

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #4 on: September 07, 2011, 01:52:22 PM »
That morning I had only been back at work for a couple of days (I had just got married on Aug 31st, and had been off on vacation). I was getting back into my ongoing project, in my office in the Engineering dept, proofing electrical schematics for a November equipment upgrade. My boss, a retired USAF Chief MSgt walked in, completely ashen-faced and said a plane had just hit the WTC in NY. I got up and went into his office and looked at the news report on his computer. We both walked across to another set of Maintenance division  offices in the plant where we had a TV so we could get better coverage. After watching shots on NBC (I think it was the Today Show) of the first plane hitting, he looked at me and said "that was no accident." He said it just didn't "look right" the way the plane angled into the side......a few minutes later the second plane hit tower 2........and I'll never forget the look on that man's face as his eyes watered up and he looked at me and just said, "Them sons of bitches."
Of course we didn't know exactly who was directly responsible, but we had a good idea. Needless to say, not much was accomplished the rest of the day.
"I expect perdition, I always have. I keep this building at my back, and several guns handy, in case perdition arrives in a form that's susceptible to bullets. I expect it will come in the disease form, though. I'm susceptible to diseases, and you can't shoot a damned disease." ~ Judge Roy Bean, Streets of Laredo

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #5 on: Today at 01:46:21 PM »

tombogan03884

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2011, 03:47:19 PM »
At the time I was living in Exeter NH, (Home of Sig ) which is right under the flight path for Pease, (A former SAC Base, now home of an Air Guard Refueling unit )For several days after all air traffic was grounded you may remember.
Well the skies were sure enough empty.
Until about 9 pm then they would launch what seemed like every plane on the field, an hour or 2 later they would start coming back in, the cycle would repeat all night till about 4AM then the skies would be empty again.

Timothy

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2011, 04:38:35 PM »
I was working in Rhode Island and watched the second plane hit the towers in a small dining room at the shop.  We had a small BW TV in the corner.  Chills ran up my spine as I muttered, "We're under attack!" to a coworker. 

My next thought was of the Murrah building in OK City and the daycare center on the ground floor.  I thought to myself how many daycare centers might exist in the WTC?

I was living in the country outside of Boston and in a direct path out of Logan to the west.  It was an eerie feeling for the next week or so with absolutely NO aircraft flying, anywhere!  I wouldn't let my kid or wife collect the mail for about six months and started keeping a firearm close by most every day.

kmitch200

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #7 on: September 08, 2011, 12:31:17 AM »
I was working a normal 24 hr shift (0800-0800) on my firetruck 9-10-01.
We had a routine first aid call at about 0430 (Phx time) the morning of 9-11.

It was an election day in either a city or county election and my station was a local voting center. The folks that run the voting get there REAL early, set up the voting booths and by the time we got back from the call, they were sitting at our dining table just looking numb watching TV.
I asked "what's up?" They said a jet hit the WTC. We joined them in watching the coverage and then the second plane hit. Then the Pentagon got hit.

My first thought was that this was an extremely well planned attack.
My second thought was that these fuckers are going to pay BIG TIME because they didn't kill EVERYONE in the US. I knew we would go 'All In' on this payback.

I got relieved by the next FF/PM coming on duty and spent the rest of the day at home watching the unfolding story.
Seeing mashed fire engines and ladders at the site after the collapse, I knew that the loss of life was going to be huge and the first responders were toast. That nearly brought me to tears. I had met some of those guys. It was one of, if not the greatest, losses of first responders ever. It was also the site of the largest amount of people saved on a call.

When my wife asked "Why would the Fire Department go into a building like that?" I told her, "Because that's what we do. We go into buildings that other people are running out of to try and save people that can't run out."
She wasn't pleased with that answer but understood...
You can say lots of bad things about pedophiles; but at least they drive slowly past schools.

jnevis

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2011, 09:22:59 AM »
I was stuck at home, on the wrong coast, unemployed.  I had left Active Duty Jun 23rd and hadn't found a new job or been processed into the Reserves yet.  Got up to get the kid (only one a the time) ready for school so Gayle could sleep (worked nights at VFA-122 working Super Hornets) and turned on the TV.  It was just after the second tower hit and I was a little confused.  I knew a plane could strike buildings but it was to deliberate.  One is an accident, two is an attack, then the third hit the Pentagon.  went in and woke up the wife.  All I could say is "Its' all different from now on."  Then watched as the first tower fell and felt totally helpless.  Nine years on the "tip of the spear" flying recon, working intel/counter-terror, experienced EMT that was just an hour away from DC up until June, and all I could do was watch from the sidelines.  That afternoon Gayle started for work and it took nearly 1.5 hrs to get in the gate and to the hangar.  There was mention of people wanting to help going to NYC to assist with recovery efforts.  gayle knew not to ask if I wanted to go, I would have walked.  decided there really wasn't much I could do and stayed.  I still feel like I haven't done enough.  Went reserves, activated as Base Security, work full time building a better Navy but I can't deploy so I feel like I haven't done what I should be doing. 
When seconds mean the difference between life and death, the police will be minutes away.

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tt11758

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Re: My personal memory of 9-11.
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2011, 03:19:19 PM »
I was in the midst of my morning drive radio show when a bulletin came over the wire that a plane had struck the World Trade Center.  At first I thought it must be either a REALLY shitty pilot, or nasty weather over Manhattan.  Even so, I turned on the TV in the studio, and began watching the coverage.  It wasn't long when, right before my eyes, the second plane hit.  I couldn't believe it.  I mean, one's an accident, two's a deliberate attack!!  We began uninterrupted (commercial-free) coverage of the story as it broke throughout the day.  Then the report came of the plane striking the Pentagon.  I remember saying, live on the air, "Holy crap, folks....we're at war!!"  After all, one's an accident, and two's an attack, but three is a definite declaration of war.

The wife and I were watching TV in the ensuing days, when President Bush (I miss him) made the famous statement about "the people who knocked these towers down will hear from all of us soon."  At the time I remember thinking that was just what the country needed to hear.  My wife looked at me and said, "In my wildest dreams I can't imagine Al Gore saying that.  Thank GOD Bush was elected!!"  I couldn't have agreed more....then or now.  He most likely won't go down in history as the best President in history (although he is by FAR the best President of the 21st Century, to date), but I believed then and believe now that he was the right man for the job at that moment in history.
I love waking up every morning knowing that Donald Trump is President!!

 

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