The Legacy of 9/11. What have we learned? What do you remember? Where were you at the time?

  • silverfox

    Posts: 3176

    Sep 11, 2009 10:43 AM GMT
    I can't help but think on this day how lucky we are to have what we have on this great earth and to remember those that give their all to protect us.

    Within my lifetime I do not remember a day that I felt more helpless and vulnerable. I was teaching a spinning class and remember seeing, on a tv monitor outside the glass room images that I couldn't quite make out. I would never have quessed what I was looking at, and then in a matter of minutes when the class ended and when I walked out of that room...everything would change.

    This is what I remember.

    How about you? Share your thoughts and remembrances please....

  • GQjock

    Posts: 11648

    Sep 11, 2009 11:05 AM GMT
    I remember it as a feeling of complete betrayal
    A government is there basically to protect its citizens

    All that patriotism and flag waving ... if the government cannot proect us in our homes or our places of work what else is there?
    I had a close relative die that day
    and I will forever place blame where it deserves to be .... on the failure is see the blatant warning signs

    That day all I can remember was trying all day to get in touch with people I knew who worked in the area and the fear and frustration of not being able to get any information

    and then the silence from the one person who actually did die there
    thinking that the phone would eventually ring

    .... and it never did
  • Halfstep

    Posts: 859

    Sep 11, 2009 11:05 AM GMT
    I was in the 7th grade and given my upbringing and family, I didn't even know what the world trade center was. I heard teachers and students crying and freaking out and they kept saying the world trade center had just fallen.
    I think the impact of it didn't reach me because I had no idea what they were talking about. It wasn't until they let us out early that I went home and saw the news. I couldn't help but see the news because my mother would watch it all day, she'd even fall asleep in front of the tv and have nightmares about it.

    911 was an awful terrible day and in many ways will always reflect that attack to many of us, but its also a happy day for me. My favorite little cousin was born that year on the same day. He's wonderful.

    I would say if I've learned anythign from it, it is the importance of smooth, swift communication. Systems and branches were so fucked up back then and still very much are.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16308

    Sep 11, 2009 12:29 PM GMT
    We did a thread on this last year I remember.... I guess its one of those days that will always be discussed....

    I was in Toronto, had been brought back to TO from Rochester, NY from a weekend seeing a friend of mine. I was to fly back home via the TO airport and was staying overnight with a friend in town. Of course I was "locked out" and ended up having to take the train to Windsor & Detroit before getting a plane back. It was an odd period of time to say the least.
    The feelings of frustration.. couldn't get home to see clients and my Dad
    wanted daily briefings about what was going on.... ah such are parents!
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    Sep 11, 2009 12:49 PM GMT

    I was apartment sitting w/ my gf for my best friend who was in europe at the time in Manhattan. My gf had left for school and I was sleeping when she called me to tell me the news. Stuck in Manhattan I went to friends where about 15 college and high school friends watched in horror and tried making ph calls to friends that wrk'd at wrl trd ctr. I Lost two friends Peter Frank and Andrew Sterginopolis and knew of more who perished that day.

    GOD BLESS...
  • silverfox

    Posts: 3176

    Sep 11, 2009 1:09 PM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidWe did a thread on this last year I remember.... I guess its one of those days that will always be discussed....


    Yes you are right Chris....I remember the thread last year, and was surprised that there was not one started this year. I hope there is one every year....
  • InsatiableBlo...

    Posts: 442

    Sep 11, 2009 1:53 PM GMT
    I was in 7th grade homeroom with Mrs. Kimmery when she hinted something had happened to the Twin Towers and Pentagon, but the faculty REFUSED to let us watch the news.
  • cowboyathlete

    Posts: 1346

    Sep 11, 2009 1:55 PM GMT
    I was on my way to work in the largest medical complex in the nation, and I fully expected us to be hit next. I also expected something to hit all of the refineries on the east side of Houston.
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    Sep 11, 2009 2:04 PM GMT
    In the months immediately after I felt like a stranger in my own country. I was living in a dull New York suburb at the time where the only time you would see a pedestrian was the few parades we had a year. But after, people would gather on busy street corners to wave flags and encourage drivers to honk if they loved America. They were being vigilant. But what they were looking for was unclear. They were standing guard against something that they were terrified of, but would never visit them. It is odd how fear and grief turn into a false bravado.
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    Sep 11, 2009 2:21 PM GMT
    I was working at the furniture shop covering an antique chase lounge. The neighboring business, fishing tackle store, came over and told us that a plane had just struck one of the towers. We all ran over to see for ourselves and see how bad things were hoping it was not as tragic as it sounded. As we watched in a state of disbelief we saw the other plane strike live right there before us. I actually still had no clue as to what was going on and a terrorist attack was probably the furthest thing from my mind. I guess I thought those days were long gone and that the US was above and beyond allowing anything like that to happen again on US territory. I was wrong and I was very very upset. I must admit that I looked at others of that race very differently for a short period of time until I realized how stupid it was to think in that manner, I just could not rationalize it all at the time ya know. Oh well I learned how to deal with it as time passed and within a matter of months I had joined my local Volunteer FD. In early 2002 I was hired in my hometown by the FD which had been something I had wanted to do for a few years before 9/11. It definitely pushed me to follow my career choice as a firefighter and I am so happy with what I do for a living now.
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    Sep 11, 2009 2:24 PM GMT
    I was on my way to work

    Became frantic- since my cousin who I'm very close to, used to connect to the Jersey trains under the WTC to go to her investment job.

    She was running late that day. She lived. Her fiancé didn't.

    I don't think we've learnt anything.

    We've become a bunch of scared little children. And our freedoms are gladly and gradually being handed over to the unscrupulous amongst us, all in the name of security.

  • FredMG

    Posts: 988

    Sep 11, 2009 2:36 PM GMT
    I was on leave from the Navy. I got up late and didn't know what was going on until almost 11am pacific coast time. What made me nervous was that there were no messages on my cell phone. It was one of the most sureal days in my life.

    The worst part is that we haven't learned anything useful for the long term. All the conditions that "caused" 9-11 are still around and have only gotten worse.

    As a veteran I feel sad and ashamed of this country and people willing to give up personal liberties in the name of "security". Stop pandering to the media, the rich and the politicians and take back your freedoms - honor the men and women who've died protecting you and your freedoms by demanding them back.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16308

    Sep 11, 2009 2:45 PM GMT
    They are rerunning the events on MSNBC from the TODAY SHOW original in 2001. (They did the same last year). It sure brings back those very unique feelings... the shock, the dismay, the feelings of anger and union with other americans. It was a day I hope we never see repeated in our lifetimes.

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    Sep 11, 2009 3:03 PM GMT
    Hmm, i was 16 and went to school 2 miles from the Pentagon. I had PE right after it was hit, and what I remember is the sounds of the sirens rushing by my school every minute. As soon as the siren started to die down after it passed, you'd immediately hear the growing din of the next siren. It went that way for hours. And if there was a break, you could just hear this loud din of sirens in the distance. For the rest of high school, if I heard a siren rush by, I'd immediately think of that day. Funny how memory works that way.

    Lots of my classmates had parents that worked there. There were a lot of hysterical teenagers. I think a few lost parents. Schools from across the country sent us cards, and they lined the walls for weeks afterwards. It was a really nice gesture.

    My mom said she was going to be at the State dept that day for a briefing. The tv said there was unconfirmed reports of a blast there, so I was really upset too. My brother picked me up from school in the middle of the day, told me he'd heard those rumors too, and that we would go home and wait for my parents to call, or for word of something worse. But she called a couple hours later.

    One other thing that stands out was a military plane passed over my house above the speed of sound, and the clap was deafening. I lived near Dulles airport, and i thought something had happened. I ran out of the house looking in the airport's direction, and after a minute when I realized what had actually happened, I looked up and down the block, and everyone else was on their driveways looking at Dulles airport as well.

    Crazy day. Though the DC Snipers was a much worse experience a year later than 9/11 was.
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    Sep 11, 2009 3:36 PM GMT
    I just got in from my morning run through park and I thought it was a trailer for a movie until I saw the other plane hit the other tower.
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    Sep 11, 2009 3:42 PM GMT
    headed to the dentist like I'm doing right now (:
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    Sep 11, 2009 3:52 PM GMT
    I remember 9/11/2001 too (and Mark Bingham). But this is 9/11/2009, and our western calendar is arbitrary.

    If we're going to continue to remember this day more than Veteran's Day or Memorial Day, then maybe we need to just roll one of those other days into this one. I'm sorry if that sounds insensitive, but I cannot help thinking that this is really National Terrorist Day, and I don't believe in rewarding those who attacked our country like that.

    Remember those you knew or were inspired by who died that day. But please be careful not to holiday-ize today. Every time we stop our lives today, an Al-Qaida recruit gets his stripes. So to speak.
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    Sep 11, 2009 4:12 PM GMT
    That day is burned into my memory.

    It was the day I was at a meeting with lawyers in a building near the Twin Towers. Of being swallowed up by clouds of dust and smoke, of my knees collapsing in fear as I ran and wondering if I was going to die right then and there.

    Seeing people helping each other....countless men and women performing incredible acts of bravery.

    The entire city was in a state of shock. The smell of things burning in the air for days on end. Candles were lit in almost every window. Everyone trying to go about their business with tears in their eyes. Strangers comforting strangers. Throughout town, there were large gatherings of people who posted pictures of their "missing" loved ones with captions of "Have you seen him/her"?.......not wanting to believe they were dead.

    The crowds of people who filled the streets to help with excavation often with their bare hands. To cheer the workers and authorities as their vehicles screamed towards and from the site. Massive collections and donations of food and clothing to assist those involved with the rescue/cleanup operations.

    It didn't matter if you were gay or straight, feminine or masculine, old or young, rich or poor, black, white or anything else.

    The anger at those responsible for doing this to MY city and MY people. The next day, the complete unreal feeling of what happened and looking up and not seeing these two building there anymore.

    I wish people remembered that feeling of brotherhood more often rather than only during a tragedy.

    Sometimes, its too much to even think about it.

  • JP85257

    Posts: 3284

    Sep 11, 2009 4:23 PM GMT
    I was working nights for Nissan at their proving ground in AZ. It was 5:30 am or so here in Phoenix when the news cut in on the radio in the car I was running and testing. I was going 90 mph in the south bank turn of the track when the supervisor radioed in to all of us to come in and park. We had been attacked.

    I felt this sense of lonliness at that immediate moment. I remember feeling absolutely helpless. I also remember crying. It was weird driving home that morning. I had left work at 7 and everyone had their head lights on as they were driving to and from work that morning.

    I remember my mom calling me saying that the building she worked in had been evacuated and I almost flipped out. It was of course because of a gas leak.

    It just all came rushing back to me. The following birthday of mine was the worst one on record (until my last one of course).

    I still have trouble dealing with it some these days still.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19070

    Sep 11, 2009 4:29 PM GMT
    I was living in Los Angeles. My mom called me up and jarred me out of a deep sleep crying and told me to turn on the TV because "We are being attacked". I was a little groggy as I turned on the TV just as the first tower was crumbling to the ground. It was like a dream or a scene from a movie. I couldn't believe that what I was seeing was actually real. I sat there watching in horror the entire day and night, never leaving the house.
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    Sep 11, 2009 4:29 PM GMT
    I was actually heading to Brussels, flying through Paris for work with several colleagues. We were late and missed our flight to Brussels and waited in the lounge. On the flight to Brussels, the captain announced that they received word of an explosions at the World Trade Center and that the Pentagon was attacked, and to expect delays going through custom. I didn't know how to react. My colleagues were asleep and when i woke them up, they thought i just misunderstood. Since we missed our original flight, and didn't show up at the time expected, our families were extremely worried.

    It was very weird being away from home, and not being able to bond with the ones you wanted to be with the most at such a time. I was away for a couple of weeks, so I missed out in being able to participate in public ceremony's to mourn, unite, and remember the victims. Watching from tv made it so surreal. But the most amazing thing I was able to experience was the compassion displayed from so many foreigners. American flags were flown and scattered throughout Brussels, and even in Paris. All flags flown were displayed in half mast.

    One night, shortly after 9-11, I snuck out to get a drink at a gay bar, and in the middle of the dance floor was an American flag propped up in the center. I got goose bumps. It really was reassuring to know that deep down inside, the world has compassion and with that small gesture, even if for a split second, we were all Americans, and visa-versa.

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    Sep 11, 2009 8:05 PM GMT
    Im just reminded today of how far along Ive come from this day 8yrs ago. I remember the last time I spoke to my bf at the time that worked in 2 WTC on the upper floors. We stayed up the night before late talking to each other like always. I tried to make up stay up later and call in to work sick... he hadn't done it in such a long while i figured why not? he said no cause he had a meeting to go to and wanted to get a big promtion that I later in his diary found out he hoped would give him more than enough money to pay for my college tuition incase when I came out to my parents they would disown me. That was the last time I spoke to him. I find myself still waiting for his phone call or for him to sign on to AIM. Ive come along way in thoes 8yrs as i think we all have. Im out to my family and they accept me for who I am. I still havent found the right guy to fill that void that was left when he was taken from me but I know he's out there leading me to the right guy or maybe giving a good kick in the ass to the guy ive been talking to for almost 4yrs that its time to move to the next lvl. Im not where I would have liked to be professionally, in my studies, and a few other places. I know he'd be pissed and say get your sh!t together. Im starting up school again in the fall and going to finish up my BA, Ive made alot of stupid deicison between then and now becaues I let my grief take the best of me. This is the year I hope to turn things around. I hope that when Im done he'll at least be proud of what I have become and where I have gone in my life. He was more than my boyfriend. He was my best friend and the most precious thing in my life that gave me motivation, peace, and strenght. Its in his memory that I find those things and hope to find my way back. To anyone thats love the love of their life my heart goes out to you and know and understand what i mean when I say that I love you. May our hearts and souls be healed and may we continue foward with our lives in great spirit they left us.
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    Sep 11, 2009 8:55 PM GMT
    There are no words to describe such a horrific moment in history. We all witnessed it and felt the same emotions. To this day, I tear up thinking about it. When I close my eyes, I can put myself back in my french class, sophomore year of highschool, watching that plane hit live on tv. My french teacher lost it and could not stop crying.....

    It was an attack against my country. It was an attack against my fellow countrymen. It was an attack against my government. It was an attack against me. I'll never forget it, nor will I ever forgive the ones who supported or did it. Anybody who applauds such an attack is just as guilty and should be tried for treason....then shot on the spot.

    This was an attack against us all. Against man kind. Over 90 countries had citizens in those buildings and pentagon and Flight 93. Let's take a moment and reflect, not the tragedy, but to celebrate life and what those 2,800+ souls offered us by way of a smile, a friendly hug, or a word of encouragement.
  • zakariahzol

    Posts: 2241

    Sep 11, 2009 9:23 PM GMT
    I was in my city apartment getting ready to sleep. Fisrt I thought it is some action movie . I cant hardly believe it real.
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    Sep 11, 2009 9:23 PM GMT
    gayblaketx saidAnybody who applauds such an attack is just as guilty and should be tried for treason....then shot on the spot.

    Ummmm. You might want to check what you say. People who applaud the attacks are assholes to be sure. But you sound like the very Taliban you profess to hate.

    Think about it.