Thursday, September 11, 2008

Never Forget

Even though it was seven years ago, I remember it like it was yesterday.

At the time I worked for a company that supported men and women that had developmental disabilities. I was responsible for transporting some of the men and women to work or school in the morning, after that, I worked at the house that they lived in to help support daily activities of the other residents.

I was transporting a few clients and the radio was on. As we parked the van and began to get out, there was an announcement on the radio indicating that there was a terrorist attack in New York. That was the only detail I had heard, and I really was only half listening because I was working and the safety of my clients was my first priority. We walked into the building and no one knew anything about it as there were no televisions or radios going. Again, I didn't think anything of it. After getting everyone settled, I went back out to the van. On the way, another transporter passed me with a look of horror on his face and said, "did you hear that an airplane just hit the World Trade Tower?". I stared at him blankly and lightly shook my head no. He told me to turn on the radio. I ran to the van and got in, and I remember seeing that it was 8:52a central time. Now I know that it had only been 6 minutes after the first plane hit.

I couldn't get back to the house fast enough. Once I arrived I tore through the door to turn on the television after the horrors I had heard on the radio. Everyone kept asking what was wrong and I couldn't even talk. I turned on the television, took about three steps back and knelt down on my knees and sat back, still not saying a word. It was 9:02a as they spoke of a second plane heading toward the south tower. Tears streamed down my face as I watched the second plane hit at 9:03a. They kept playing the image over and over as though it wasn't real. I couldn't believe what I was seeing no matter how many times they showed it.

I didn't know anyone in the Towers, or even in New York, but all I could think about was the people that were there. The people in the planes, in the Tower, on the ground. Their friends, family, loved ones. All I could do was sob and watch as a part of our nation was being destroyed. I sat in front of the tv watching the videos and the horror of how the morning unfolded. After the Tower attack, it was then flight 77 that crashed into the Pentagon, and then the Flight 93 crash near Pittsburgh. This was all before 11a. Two hours....our country changed forever.

They began talking about possible other cities of attack, Chicago being one of them. I am only about an hour and a half north of Chicago so that only added to my worry. That, and the fact that I knew my dad was in Chicago for business. The entire day was full of unknowns.

I knew that my family was safe and I contacted them multiple times throughout the day. It was the longest work day of my life. I just wanted to get home and hold my children, my oldest being 3 and my newborn son, less than 2 months old. I held them the entire night as each news station recapped the devastation and cried.

I know how I felt, not being directly involved. I cannot even fathom how those that lost loved ones even managed that day or the days after. My heart still goes out to those and it pains me to remember this day seven years ago, the tears still forming as I write this post.

That day, 09/11/01, changed us forever. We will never forget......

A video with photos from that terrible day...all to was like it was yesterday.

Alan Jackson wrote Where Were You.....this song still makes me cry when I hear it.

Never Forget ~~ 09/11/01

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