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9/11/01 - where were you and what actions did you take learning of the tragedy

Discussion in 'General Topics' started by Paul Farkas, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. Paul Farkas

    Paul Farkas Administrator

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    For the next week or so there will be 9/11 discussions.

    The nation has never been the same since the first plane crashed into the Twin Towers. Let's get personal...

    Share your stories. I'll get the ball rolling.

    "On 9/11 Adam and I were having breakfast in my Downtown Chicago residence. We heard the news report of a commercial airliner crashing into the World Trade Center in New York and saw the horrific pictures.

    Looking out of our apartment window there was a view of Sears Tower less than a mile away. Would that be the next target from at that time unknown assailants?

    We looked at each other and simultaneously said "Let's get the hell out of here." Adam drove 24 hours straight not allowing me a turn behind the wheel. (Ah... to have the energy of a 30 year old).

    We arrived the next day in Boca Raton,FL which was perceived to be safer not being, on the terrorist hit list."

    Since 9/11/01 airport security has become a slow down nightmare. Muslim-Americans have had their share of prejudice grief.We have lost lives and treasure fighting two wars left to be accomplished by 1% of the population, letting the Chinese fund the war, while US taxes were reduced. Now,the nation is on the verge of economic collapse.

    Do you feel safer and better off than you did 10 years ago?
     
  2. Alan Grover OD

    Alan Grover OD Active Member

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    I was working in Tulsa, OK in what is known as the BOK / Williams tower. It is an exact replica miniature of one of the Twin Towers, designed by the same architect on purpose that way. My office was on the top (52nd floor) of this tower.

    On that morning I had the later shift not coming to work until 10am. I was getting ready for work, walked past the television and saw the report that something had hit the South Tower, I immediately thought of a bad plane crash or the like, then as I was watching Fox News the live feed showed the second tower being targeted by another plane. I said to my wife "Oh, Lord terrorists are using planes as missles!"

    I then wondered, "What exactly are their targets? Is it all high-rises? Is it all major / minor cities? Would they possibly target ours since it is an exact replica?" I will tell you I was VERY nervous abuot going to work that day on the 52nd floor of a tower that is identical albeit it smaller than those that were hit. The company eventually told only essential personnel to stay, all others were allowed to go home. We all watched in horror as the towers fell, and as the reports of other planes crashed into the pentagon and in PA. What a terrible day!

    I remember how eery it was to not see planes in the air. The Tulsa airport is International and their flight path takes planes right over that tower.
     
  3. Steven Nelson

    Steven Nelson ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    I was active duty Navy stationed at the Naval Hospital in Corpus Christi. Mainly we just stood around the TV monitors and in preparedness meetings all day (we were unable to leave the base, so there was plenty of time for them). It's difficult to verbalize the level of emotion we felt as we watched it all come down. It was such an amazing combination of outrage, sadness, willingness to serve, brotherhood and fear for the future that I was honestly exhausted the next day.

    We were honestly at our best as a country on 9/12. We tend to forget that despite our differences, we've got REAL enemies elsewhere that delight at our internal squabbling.
     
  4. Gary R. Bell

    Gary R. Bell ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    I was at home and was utterly shocked by what I saw on TV. My location was not centralized, so I didn't feel immediately endangered. In the days that followed there were ultra demonstrations of patriotism, like festooning cars with flags. Church attendance exploded. Everyone felt at one with beseiged New York. There was much talk about what the next strike would be; dirty bombs or suitcase nukes? We seemed very vulnerable. The anthrax attack at the National Enquirer followed in short order. Everybody became afraid of getting an anthrax letter in the mail.

    It was a time of great fear, and that fear caused people to back unwise military moves like invading Iraq. I was leary even from the beginning on that because the way the pol's said "Weapons of mass destruction" sounded really phony to me. That was just a gut reaction, but it turned out to be accurate.:(
     
  5. AdminWolf

    AdminWolf Site Administrator & Tech Lead
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    The ODwire.org time machine..

    ODwire.org has been around a long time.

    If you want to see what things were like back then, read this thread, from a week after 9/11.

    adam
     
  6. Richard_Hom

    Richard_Hom ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    At the time, I was working for a computer company and everybody had their computers on either looking at CNN.com or MSNBC.com via live Internet feeds. The television was also used but CNN and MSNBC shined brightly with uninterrupted coverage.
     
  7. Mike Sandy

    Mike Sandy Well-Known Member

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    I was in Jr. High School.
     
  8. Ken Elder

    Ken Elder ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    I was living in Las Vegas having moved out of NYC (Thank God) in August of 2001.

    I woke up around 7:00am (10:00am New York time) and turned on the TV to see what I found out later was the north tower smoking.

    After about 10 seconds, the phone rang. It was my mom asking if I was watching TV. I said "yes, what's going on?" She said a plane hit it so I said ok....let me go watch it.

    So I hung up the phone and literally like 20 seconds later, the north tower collapsed. By this point the south tower had already collapsed but I had no idea that that happened. Tom Brokaw and Katie Couric said something like "oh my God...here goes the second tower. Yes. Here it goes." And they said it casually like a baseball commentator calling a routine ground out in the 4th inning of a meaningless ball game.

    Wait.....the SECOND tower collapsed? That means the OTHER tower ALREADY collapsed was what I was thinking to myself. Huh? And then they showed a wide shot of the area and yes, both towers were down.

    So my first reaction was that my mom must have been wrong. It must have been an earthquake. How could a plane crash cause both towers of the world trade center to collapse?

    Then they started talking about the Pentagon which had already been hit and then they started reporting another crash in Pennsylvania. There was also some rumors about an explosion at the state department and as many as 20 planes unaccounted for.

    All of this happened within about 3 minutes of me waking up. So I was like WTF is going on here? Then they started saying that we were under attack.

    Ok....that made sense at least. We were under attack. But by WHO? Russians? Iran? Who could it be?

    So I woke my wife up and we watched for a couple of hours. We never really were "fearful" for own safety other than for about 20 minutes between like 10:15 and 10:45 east coast time when no one seemed to know what was happening. Was this the start of World War III or something? Was this some sort of horrible Matthew Broderick War Games accident?

    Then it seemed to be "over" and the information started to come up in that it was a very well co-ordinated terrorist attack.
     
  9. Mike Cohen

    Mike Cohen Well-Known Member

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    9/11

    I was on Delta at 35,000 feet headed for Tampa from Cleveland.

    The pilot came on the intercom and said that a plane had hit one of the Towers in New York.

    Within minutes, the plane I was on began a slow turn to the right. I recall saying to the lady seated next to me, "We're not going to Tampa."

    Without a word, the entire staff of attendents lined up across the first-class galley and blocked the door to the cockpit.

    The the pilot came back on the intercom and said that a second plane had been flown into the Towers, and all flights were being cancelled and diverted to the nearest airfield.

    As we desended into Cinncinati, it looked as if a kid had scattered toy airplanes all over the field - there must have been a hundred on the tarmacks and grassy areas.

    Except for sobbing, the plane was silent.
     
  10. Mike Alvarez

    Mike Alvarez ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    While leaving the house for work, my wife told me a plane had hit the World Trade Center. I glanced at the TV and they were saying they weren't sure but thought it was some kind of small plane that got confused and hit the tower. I went to work and soon heard another plane had hit the other tower. I was glad I was working at a satellite office in Boubonais (not sure how to spell that, the Bears practice there) rather than at the main office in Chicago. Anyway, we felt safe enough in the hinterlands and just worked our normal day, although we did keep the radio going all day.
     
  11. AdminWolf

    AdminWolf Site Administrator & Tech Lead
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    Paul and I were in downtown Chicago, near the Hancock building, it was a little unnerving.

    Meanwhile, this thread is an example of why ODwire.org may be useful someday in the future -- we don't delete the old topics, so it is a true time capsule.
     
  12. Michael Barris

    Michael Barris Well-Known Member

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    The link is not working today.
     
  13. AdminWolf

    AdminWolf Site Administrator & Tech Lead
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    Fixed! Good catch :)
     
  14. Ed Makler

    Ed Makler ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    At the time, my son worked in the American Express buiding, which across the street from the World,Trade Center. He would take the subway which ended in the basement of the World Trade Center. While he was getting coffee in the basement the first plane hit.

    Within minutes, his wife called us and said Jason is ok. We didn't know what she was talking about. We turned on the tv and saw the hole in the first tower burning. Within minutes the second plane hit.

    I cannot repeat what I said at that time because it is not politically correct today.

    My son left his building, even though the firemen said to stay on the building. When he came out, he was exposed to things no human should see. He still has problems on September 11.

    We were able to stay in contact with him with emails till the second tower fell and the antennas went down.

    I worked that day and when the plane hit the pentagon, I called my friend, General Roger Brady who was at the pentagon. He said "it is bad, can't talk" the last plane crashed in the field.

    I came home that night,put up my flag and got my old Air Force uniform out. The only thing that still fit was my hat. This was not going to be a war I could participate in, but only support.

    My friend, Jerry Grodin, M.D., who was 52 at the time, went to the army enlistment center and stood in line the next day. A soldier cam out and asked him, if he was here for his son. His answer" I am here for my country" the soldier said you are too old. Which he answered, I am a cardiac surgeon. They moved him to the front of the line and he was a major that week. He recently retired from the guard as a full colonel.


    This will be a date,I hope Americans never forget. It changed our country and the lives of many people.
     
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  15. Richard Frankel

    Richard Frankel Well-Known Member

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    We were in the office when my daughter called from her office at Rutgers. She told us to put the news on and get ready to leave the offices while we could. She said they received bomb threats and we're shutting down. Both directions of the highways would be redirected out. We canceled hours, with some patients complaining about our doing so. On the way home, I had ABC news on the radio. They were complaining that they were getting nothing from the White House as to what was going on. They said Pres. Bush should be making a statement to reassure the country.

    I made it home and received calls from the hospital with instructions as to what to do in an emergency. Having NY TV stations, the coverage was extensive, I thought back to difference that must have occured when Pearl Harbor was attacked and information started to get out. Rumors and false information must have run rampant.
     
  16. Lisa Heuer

    Lisa Heuer ODwire.org Supporting Member

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    Ed, reading your version of that morning made me shudder. Mine is similar, although related to my best friend rather than a child. Her morning commute into Manhattan involved changing trains in the bottom of the WTC. She woke me with a phone call that morning, "Lisa, I just want you to know I'm still at home and I'm fine. I took an early conference call from home." I was confused and didn't know what she was talking about because it was very early here in California. She started to tell me what was happening, but lost her cell signal a few seconds later. Her phone service wasn't restored for another day or two, but I was so grateful to have gotten that brief phone call, otherwise I would have been even more distraught by the events of the day, wondering if she was okay.

    One month prior, I visited her and took a beautiful photo of the towers from her bedroom window. She saw the second plane hit and watched both towers fall from this vantage point.

    22 The view from Debs apartment.JPG

    My mom was on a runway at O'Hare, ready for take-off. The plane returned to the gate but the pilot did not tell them what was happening. They learned from the news monitors in the terminal.

    My husband's uncle worked on one of the top floors of the WTC. He was in traffic court that day because of a speeding ticket, otherwise he would have been at work during the attack. That speeding ticket probably saved his life.

    I remember watching the coverage in disbelief, never having felt so vulnerable and worried for our homeland safety. That short period when they were saying that x number of planes were unaccounted for was terrifying. I was scheduled to give a presentation that afternoon, so went to the office and got through it, then went back home. Work seemed so trivial, and it was impossible to concentrate.
     
    Bill C. Thompson OD and Ed Makler like this.
  17. Bill C. Thompson OD

    Bill C. Thompson OD Well-Known Member

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    I was driving to work and heard a small airplane had crashed into one of the twin towers.

    When I arrived, a female employee was standing at the door of the break room watching it on TV. She was kind of frantic and agitated. I started talking to her, trying to calm her down.

    As we were talking we both saw the second plane hit. This changed everything. She started screaming, crying, etc. then other employees and a couple of our patients came to the break room door and began watching the news coverage.

    It became a very strange day in the office. We tried to carry on as normal, but it was very difficult. Several patients no showed. That first employee I talked to asked to take the day off. She was an emotional wreck. Letting her go home helped all of us.

    I'll never forget that day. Never!
     
  18. Greg Gemoules

    Greg Gemoules Well-Known Member

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    I just remember hearing about it on the radio on the short 5 minute drive to work, and my staff would keep me updated throughout the morning.

    What was striking was how quiet it was. We are near the DFW Airport and all flights had been grounded. It was eerie.