9/11-where were you on the morning

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9/11-where were you on the morning

Post by WatchDorks.Net » September 9th 2011, 12:18pm

There aren't many events in my life where I can clearly remember was before, during, and after. September 11, 2001 is one of those.

The previous weekend I had been at a music convention in Burbank, CA. I flew home the night of September 10 and arrived in Indianapolis at about midnight. I got home at about 2am and went to bed.

I had taken the 11th off from work because I knew I'd be getting home in the wee hours. I got up at 10am, flipped on the TV, to find out that all hell had broken loose. It was surreal. I wondered if it was some sort of joke or simulation or something, but then the realization set in that this was all too real.

Several friends that I was at the convention with had decided to stay an extra day for sightseeing, but ended up being stranded for almost a week when all airline flights were grounded and the resulting delays in catching up in flights. I'm glad I went out early to the convention rather than staying afterwards. To date that is the last time I flew.

When I first saw the TV broadcasts on the morning of 9/11, the two towers were still standing, and there had been no footage yet found of the actual planes. Over the next day I sat glued to the television, watched the towers fall with tears in my eyes, and then as we found out more details of what had happened, being filled with a sense of rage... wanting to get the bastards that did this... a feeling that I think a large portion of our country has forgotten as time has passed.

I remember sadness as the stories surfaced of people's last communications with their loved ones, and the overwhelming sense of pride at the first responders, many who gave their lives, and for the people on the plane that went down in Pennsylvania; their selfless act of heroism in their final moments.

I remember in the days afterward the unforgettable World Series game at Yankees stadium with GW throwing out the ceremonial first pitch, delivering a perfect strike from the mound, and then hearing the chants of "USA, USA" starting.

Here's a snapshot of culture from the morning of Sep. 11 that I've saved for all these years, a recording of the Howard Stern show from that morning as the events unfolded. It starts off innocuously, discussion of Danny Almonte, an interview with Kid Rock and Pam Anderson, discussion of Howard's love life... and then...

It's 2 hours and 38 minutes long. The first realization of the attacks occurs starting at about 15:30. The unintentional foreshadowing is chilling, even to this day. It's clear they didn't realize the extent of things as it was occurring. The stark contrast between the normal juvenile behavior on his show and the reality of what was happening is something else.

Howard Stern Show From 9/11/01


I think that 2001 was the last time we as a country were anything even remotely resembling unified. I think we have forgotten that feeling and that need. It's too bad.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by koimaster » September 9th 2011, 1:40pm

ruined my vacation in Whistler. All the americans running around like paranoid chickens worried that an invasion was going to occur. I do not remember it because of the actual incident, but as stated, for ruining my vacation. It also forced Carol who was in Ireland to stay an extra two weeks for security reasons.

A much more important day in my life was when JFK was killed. I was a kid in school when the news was broadcast over the speakers and teachers came out of rooms crying. I guess things are related to perspective.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by TemerityB » September 9th 2011, 2:12pm

My apartment complex is a straight line four miles directly from the old WTC site. The next morning, our whole neighborhood smelled like a huge electrical fire. I can't imagine what those responders and people around the site went through.

I had slept late that day, I was off. My wife walked back about eight miles home after she heard what was happening on the radio (as you might recall) the first plane hit, what, 10 minutes to 9; he wasn't due in till 10); she got off a bus and just walked home listening to her AM radio. I woke up to see the towers on fire.

Then fall.

It feels like no time has passed at all since then.

I could bore you guys with more, but allow me this: I am still every bit as outraged at the motherfuckers who did this as I was that day. This is the truth: A fellow I bowl with lost both his sons in those buildings, and he had a heart attack three days ago, and I'm sure this huge 10th anniversary marking didn't help any.

There are no excuses for September 11, 2001. No political or religious reason. NONE. I'll say today what I said then: Take those motherfuckers out. No excuses. No trials, no BS. Just take those motherfuckers OUT. As I write this, most of NYC is goddamn lockdown mode again from a perceived terrorist threat. Show these bastards no mercy, and that goes for terrorism around the globe. Take 'em out.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by mrneddles » September 9th 2011, 3:07pm

I was making rounds with my team in the ICU. One of the medical residents came up to us and said NYC was under attack. We watched the TV's in the patient's rooms between discussions of the medical plan and orders for each patient that day. The wife of one of the doctors on my team was a professor at Columbia and he was trying to reach her without success all day. We all just tried to do our jobs the best we could that morning.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by Bigjimzlll » September 9th 2011, 3:10pm

I was getting ready for work on the Westcoast. I was watchin the local news and the ABC Newyork station broke in.
I sat in disbelief thinking it was a horrible accident...then on live TV I saw the second plane hit. At that point I(along with everyone else) knew it was an attack.

I was only 5 when JFK got off'd, but I do remember well when Bobby and MLK got it.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by 2010gt » September 9th 2011, 6:24pm

I was working on some network equipment in one of my offices which happened to be across the street from my grandmother's house. I overheard some guys talking about an accident at the WTC, and a coworker accompanied me to my grandmother's house. We sat down on the couch in front of the TV just as the second plane hit...we all sat silently overwhelmed with the reality that this was no accident. Shortly thereafter, we were all recalled to my office and put on security lockdown and we watched intently as the disaster unfolded before our eyes. Looking back on it I was very proud of the quick response of my company at the time, Verizon, and how well they restored emergency and public service at the areas in and around ground zero.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by nous defions » September 9th 2011, 6:59pm

koimaster wrote:ruined my vacation in Whistler.



I’m sorry that your vacations were inconvenienced.

On the day of September 11, 2001:

I was attending the Special Forces Assessment and Selection in Camp Mackall, NC at the time. About 327 of us were taking part in the psychological assessment tests in the old classrooms/auditoriums (they are no longer there as the facility has been largely renovated and improved since then). I was sitting in the bottom left portion of the large auditorium, nearest the main side door, when one of our senior Special Forces instructors – a Sergeant First Class - came in and took the test supervisor to the side for a few minutes. At first, I just went on with my test, and then, I saw a look in the test supervisor’s face that I will never forget. She let us continue with our tasks, for the time being. The Special Forces instructor left the classroom.

About an hour later, the entire camp chain-of-command, and much of the Special Forces cadre, came into the auditorium, and we sensed something was wrong. The Sergeant Major gave a CD to one of the cadre NCOs and he inserted it into the computer that fed to two large theater-like screens in front of us. The test supervisor addressed us, “Who needs more time to finish the test?” No one raised their hands; we had run the full course of our test time by then. “Then, pass the tests to the person to the left, and the last person, please bring them all down to me here.” When this was done, the Sergeant Major addressed us, “Gentlemen, we are at war.”

“A couple of hours ago, the World Trade Center, in New York City, was attacked by terrorists who apparently commandeered civilian airliners – presumably through hijacking – and piloted them straight into the two main towers, the ‘Twin Towers’. There is word that the Pentagon was also hit and that there may be other aircraft out there with the intent of targeting the White House, and the Congress. This is not a drill, nor is it part of your psychological assessment; this is real. So, the implication is clear, Special Operations Forces will be tip of the spear for our retaliation, whatever it is. Thus, you men are now in a selection process that will lead you into deadly combat. Some of you will not be selected; some of you will quit, or be asked to leave. And, of those very few selected for Special Forces training, even fewer will get to graduate and wear the Special Forces qualification badge and the Green Beret. But, those of you that succeed, will surely go to battle, and shed blood, and avenge our loss today.”

Then Sergeant Major stepped back and nodded to the NCO to whom he had given the CD, and on the large screens appeared still shots from CNN’s broadcast showing one tower smoldering in flames, black smoke billowing into the clear blue sky. Then, there was another of a plane plowing into the South Tower. The following picture was a close up of a woman falling from one of the towers. The next two pictures were of the towers collapsing – one tower, then the other. The final picture was simply that of an American flag with the words “God Bless America” superimposed over the photo.

SFAS was completely changed after that; not only for my class, but for every class thereafter. The Special Forces Qualification course that followed SFAS – nearly two years of grueling physical and academic training – was also forever changed. For many of us, unsuccessful completion of the course meant that we would not get to go a fight a war on a land that had filled many ancient graves from times immemorial. Succeeding in SFAS and graduating from the Qualification Course meant the opportunity to go to war. From my class of 327 candidates, 116 were selected over three weeks later. Over a year and a half later, I was on the stage of the Crown Coliseum, in Fayetteville, NC, graduating from the Qualification Course with about 40 others from my original SFAS class whom had made it this far. We had many others from other SFAS classes as well whose graduation times coincided with ours due to differences in specialty course length and other factors.

Two years later, I found myself on a different sort of stage: A harrowing firefight on a distant valley in the Uruzgan Province, along with eight other Special Forces Soldiers, our lead vehicle just 34 feet from my location, burning and torn in two pieces. Secondary explosions occurred every few minutes from all of the ammunition in that vehicle – 40mm grenades, 7.62, 5.56 and the odd C-4 charge and detonation cord. We had just lost four men and were fighting for our lives. When all was said and done, the BDA yielded two of our own slightly injured, four KIA and a large number of enemy dead. At nearly seven and a half hours after first contact, our ground assault convoy was escorted back to our firebase by a pair of AH-64s.

Looking back, I can’t help but be grateful that I have had the chance to fight alongside men that, regardless of the impending danger to them, would volunteer for something as brutally grueling as SFAS, work through the rigors of the Special Forces Qualification Course, in order to go to war. Even after seeing those images of our towers collapsing, and the loss of thousands of lives, these American men show exemplary courage time and again. Every time I think of 9-11, I also think about this.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by labman » September 9th 2011, 7:00pm

I was on my way to work listening to Howard Stern and dropping my kids off at day care, Howard commented on the first plane striking the 1st tower and pretty much said that were were under attack that there was no way a "small" plane could do that much damage, then the 2nd plane hit.

I went in to drop my kids off, told the director she should turn the TV on and then went to work between dropping my kids off and getting into work the other plane hit the Pentagon and the other plane went down in PA.

My sister who lives in PA was going to work and saw the plane that went down flying extremely low and knew something was wrong when she saw it.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by tinman1965 » September 9th 2011, 7:03pm

I was in McLean, Virginia at a client of mine. I was doing a walk through of his space with a contractor when my client came in to tell me that a plane flew into one of the Trade Center buildings. We all went downstairs to the cafe that had a TV in it and watched as the second plane flew hit the other tower. My ex wife worked at the US Capital and my client told me to get out of there. Driving home into MD I had heard about the Pentagon. By that time the traffic in the DC area was at a crawl with everyone rushing home. I was unable to get a hold of my wife for a long period of time due to her being evacuated and the cell phone services being jammed with everyone trying to call their loved ones. It was a very surreal site as I crossed over the Woodrow Wilson Bridge (one of the bridges that connects MD and VA) and saw the smoke in the distance from the Pentagon.

I did leave the kids in school as I thought that would be the best place to keep them until I could hear back from my wife.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by nlandin » September 9th 2011, 8:24pm

I was on duty, working on a 911 ambulance in San Jose; we just brought a patient to the Emergency Room. I walked into the waiting room and saw the tv's showing the North Tower on fire. An elderly couple was sitting there. We started talking about how hard it would be for the fire department to get it out; then the 3 of us saw the second plane hit the South Tower, we said nothing.
My radio began to call all units to respond up. I got my partner out of the ER and to the rig. We were ordered to standby, then everyone available was sent to the main HQ. We were placed on a mandatory holdover.
All of us (Paramedics and EMTs ) were watching the TV at the main HQ when the South Tower fell. It is hard to describe the mood; no one spoke.
We did not know what to expect on the West Coast.

I called to check on my kids, they were scared but OK. We were placed on mandatory holdovers and extra shifts.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by TickTocker » September 9th 2011, 10:57pm

It was my day off and I was sleeping in until my dad came rushing in yelling for me to turn the tv on. I didn't even have to change the channel since every station was covering the story. For the first minute or so I just sat there, like in a lucid dreamstate, in utter disbelief of what was transgressing right before my eyes on the screen.

The next day at work, I found out that one of my co-workers whom I had worked with for several years and considered a close friend, dad died in tower 2. A few weeks later he enlisted in the military to get his revenge and extract payback on those responsible. Ironically he was killed in combat two and a half years later in Iraq. At his funeral his mother read exerts from some his letters and it revealed how he was upset at his commanders for not deploying him to Afghanistan instead. It turned out that many soldiers who were victimized in the attacks were sent to Iraq instead, for fear that they may lash out on the Afghanistan civilians or what not.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by Bourbon City » September 10th 2011, 4:11am

I was working in my home office that day. I turned on my TV. It must have been right after the first plane hit. I then called my Sister and told her to turn on the TV. I did not tell her why. We have family in the Bronx and on Long Island. Our family was safe. I saw the second plane strike the other tower.

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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by conjurer » September 10th 2011, 8:45am

I was in my home office, writing, listening to a local radio station. They broke in to the programming to say that a small plane had hit one of the WTC towers. I went into the living room and turned on CNN and saw the picture of both towers afire. I sat there, transfixed, as both towers fell.



Totally numb, I realized I had to go to work. I showered and dressed and drove down I5, which was almost totally empty of traffic. At the time I was running a B.Dalton in Tacoma. I got there and found that the mall had been closed for the day. so I called my boss, the district manager, and went home.



I turned on the TV again when I got home and watched the video of the planes hitting the buildings, over and over, forgot to eat lunch, talked to my wife, who was still at work, relaying the information I saw (her bitch boss didn't close the office or even let anyone turn on a radio.)



What I recall most vividly was getting up out of my chair around two o'clock in the afternoon and thinking, I've got to do something else right now, I've got to do something normal. I simply can't watch this any longer right now.



I went outside to mow my lawn, even though I did this just a couple of days ago and it didn't need doing again, but it was something normal to do. I remember it was a beautiful day, with the blue skies you only see in the Pacific Northwest or, maybe, just for that day, like you'd have seen in New York City. We live right under a flight path for SeaTac airport, and normally we have an airliner going over our house, very high and humming softly, every couple of minutes. By then, every airliner was on the ground, and I couldn't believe how quiet it was. When I finished my unnecessary lawn cutting and stopped the mower, it was still so silent, as nature itself was holding her breath, waiting for the terrible sword of justice to fall on the necks of the wretches who caused all of this.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by gregl515 » September 10th 2011, 11:22am

I was visiting clients at York County Prison in York, Pennsylvania. A guard came into the room and kicked me out without explanation. York has an immigration section.

I learned of the attack on NPR and from calling my office and my then wife who is an RN in an ICU. It took almost an hour to get back to my office, most of it bumper to bumper and on my cell phone. Our local courts did not close, so I kept working.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by Horse Feathers » September 10th 2011, 10:35pm

conjurer wrote:I went outside to mow my lawn, even though I did this just a couple of days ago and it didn't need doing again, but it was something normal to do. I remember it was a beautiful day, with the blue skies you only see in the Pacific Northwest or, maybe, just for that day, like you'd have seen in New York City. We live right under a flight path for SeaTac airport, and normally we have an airliner going over our house, very high and humming softly, every couple of minutes. By then, every airliner was on the ground, and I couldn't believe how quiet it was. When I finished my unnecessary lawn cutting and stopped the mower, it was still so silent, as nature itself was holding her breath, waiting for the terrible sword of justice to fall on the necks of the wretches who caused all of this.


Much better written, but my experience is eerily similar. I decided to take the day off so my wife and I could do some shopping and prepare our home for my sons birthday party. We heard the initial take on the story (small plane struck WTC) and was naturally concerned for those affected but like many didnt know the full extent. We started out on our shopping and after 30 minutes or so of driving we started to hear more and more on the radio, we turned and headed home. Once home it was surreal as we started to hear the stories of the incidents in DC and PA (not too far from us).

Like John after awhile I needed to get away from the TV so I focused back to the party but wanted to be by myself so I started cutting the grass. Although we are in a rural area we are in a flight path for a couple of airports. I remember looking to the sky for planes (not that I could do anything) but quickly realized there wouldnt be any. On that day and many after I noticed the quiet caused by planes being grounded. For those who have ever worked in a Data Center and had a complete shutdown its that same kind of quiet.
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Re: So where were you on the morning of 9/11?

Post by TemerityB » September 11th 2011, 10:36am

DX wrote:The Tampa Tribune...

I was the only production person.
I have every photo saved that came over the wire that day.


There you go! And that's why my outrage and anger have not subsided, not even a bit, to this day. Well done.
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