where were you when...

Old Sep 11th 2007, 1:59 pm
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Default where were you when...

There's a very strange atmosphere at work today, given the date. Everybody's subdued and there's a sad kind of atmosphere.

I just had a chat with one of my bosses about 'his' experience of 9/11 - he was ironically meant to be flying that day to see his grandmother in Florida, but she'd passed away so he'd cancelled his flight. He told me he figured it was her looking out for him from up above.

I think everybody will remember exactly where they were when they heard the news about the 9/11 attacks - but being so close to New York, everybody's story I've heard is pretty vivid. Just thought I'd ask if anybody wanted to share where they were that day, or wanted to mention anybody they wanted to pay tribute to.

My story was fairly boring - I was at home in France when I heard the news. I was SO ignorant of America that I thought the World Trade Centre was in Washington DC (and that DC was north of New York.)

Little did I know that two months to the day, I'd be landing in JFK for the first time.

God bless all those touched by the tragedy.



ps. MODs - please feel free to move/merge this thread if there are other similar ones cropping up.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:11 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

Originally Posted by Roland Hulme

My story was fairly boring - I was at home in France when I heard the news. I was SO ignorant of America that I thought the World Trade Centre was in Washington DC (and that DC was north of New York.)
I spent that morning in Devon at the funeral of my old boss when I worked in Africa and for quite a while we had no idea what had happened. I went with some former colleagues, one of whom was also an old college friend. We left the post funeral reception in a sombre state of mind and didn't bother to turn on the car radio. On the way home my friend wanted to pop into Ikea in Bristol, and as we pulled into the car park her mobile rang. It was her dad calling to tell her something about the DIY he was doing on her newly bought house, and at the end of the conversation he threw in "by the way, isn't it awful what happened in New York". "Er, no, what?"
That was about 3pm and up until then we had no idea.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:16 pm
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I was working from home and was extremely pregnant. When I called hubby at his work he thought at first that the news had put me in to labour. Pretty much no-one did any work in the entire company that day. One of the employees was on the second plane that hit the towers. I watched live on CNN as both towers collapsed. I didn't cry, but I've had just enough medical training to recognise I was already in shock.

We went over to my in-laws after work and just talked and talked and talked.

All in all, one of the most surreal days I've ever encountered.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:18 pm
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I was watching a New Report on TV about a terrorist and how much time he would be getting...the report was in New York just up from the towers...you heard the first crash on the TV...people started coming up the road within a min or so...I remember the reporter stopped one person it was a male nurse he was running home to get some things to help....he had no idea what had happened...just that people would need helping..I came out to the PC to see if it was on the news here...it did say a plane had crashed...went back to the TV the show had been pulled....came back out here the news had been pulled...never saw that bit of tape again....
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:19 pm
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I remember driving back from by daughter's school around 8 am...it was a glorious September morning not a cloud in the sky. When I got home I went on the treadmill...it was then the 'breaking news' came on the TV.

I got a call from my daughter...one of her friend's father works for AMEX...he was having a breakfast meeting in one of the towers and she couldn't reach her mum. Fortunately he didn't make the meeting. Unfortunately a teacher's husband wasn't so lucky...he was trapped in his office...he called his wife whilst she was teaching my daughter's class. My husband's company lost staff who were travelling on each of the planes...one was a young grad student who had started work a few weeks before..it was her first time travelling for the company. One was a guy travelling with his young son...another left behind a pregnant wife and small daughter.

Last edited by Jerseygirl; Sep 11th 2007 at 2:21 pm.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:19 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

My parents were in France, had just started a canal holiday near Auxerre. They were unaware of what had happened until much later on in the day, and after that all they wanted to do was just get home.

Had a devil of a time getting through to my family in England, but they were all much relieved once they knew we were OK. I mean, not like we're close to where it all happened, but the financial exchanges were evacuated in downtown Chicago, as was our local huge mall, just 4 miles away.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:23 pm
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At the time, I was a management consultant working out of Chicago. We had a large project with Aon, we had a team of about 15 people in their New York offices. Aon's offices were on floor 92 (I believe) of the South Tower, second tower to be hit.

Two of my friends died, two made it out ( http://cf.newsday.com/911/victimsearch.cfm?id=2594 ).

I wasn't in the office at the time as the commuter trains had been diverted from downtown Chicago. I spent the rest of the day glued to the TV and Fark ( http://www.fark.com/archives/index.2001-09-16.shtml.gz ) at home, frantically calling all of my co-workers. It was an absolutely overwhelming day. When the plane hit the Pentagon, I had the sense that the entire world had gone completely mad and that nothing was safe. It was a bizarre mix of feelings: mainly hopelessness, despair, utter shock and anger.

It still scares me that I could have easily been assigned to that project and been in the WTC that day. Also, my wife and I had just had our first child at the time and I realized that the country (and the world) she would grow up in would always be different from the one I grew up in...
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 2:36 pm
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I remember it clearly. I'd just graduated uni, had been out here with my then girlfriend and flown back on United a few days before. On a side note, the flight attendant on the leg from Cleveland to DC was brand new and was on his first solo flight, he was so nervous and didn't manage to get round the whole plane with drinks and looked so relieved when we landed. I still wonder if he was on one of "the" flights. Anyway, I had just had my lunch and watched neighbours when they broke to the story just after the second plane hit. I watched it until I had to go to my grandparents. They didn't know so we put on the TV just as the first tower collapsed. You know you're in the middle of a world changing event when the only thing somebody who served through the whole second world war can say is "I've never seen anything like this in my life." I think I must have watched BBC for almost 12 hours that day.

My sister was in London for the day at the time and with all the speculation going on my mum was worried sick. We couldn't get hold of her and my mum had left her a bunch of messages telling her what had happened and saying to stay away from the tourist areas and big buildings. When she finally called, where was she? Standing next to canery wharf!
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 3:19 pm
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Sat at me desk (having lunch) in the bowels of Agilent just outside Edinburgh saw a BBC ticker news report of a light aircraft hitting one of the towers. Intrigued I put on the streaming BBC news. We pretty much all sat there for the afternoon in total disbelief at what unfolded.......
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 3:21 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

Originally Posted by Roland Hulme
There's a very strange atmosphere at work today, given the date. Everybody's subdued and there's a sad kind of atmosphere.

I just had a chat with one of my bosses about 'his' experience of 9/11 - he was ironically meant to be flying that day to see his grandmother in Florida, but she'd passed away so he'd cancelled his flight. He told me he figured it was her looking out for him from up above.

I think everybody will remember exactly where they were when they heard the news about the 9/11 attacks - but being so close to New York, everybody's story I've heard is pretty vivid. Just thought I'd ask if anybody wanted to share where they were that day, or wanted to mention anybody they wanted to pay tribute to.

My story was fairly boring - I was at home in France when I heard the news. I was SO ignorant of America that I thought the World Trade Centre was in Washington DC (and that DC was north of New York.)

Little did I know that two months to the day, I'd be landing in JFK for the first time.

God bless all those touched by the tragedy.



ps. MODs - please feel free to move/merge this thread if there are other similar ones cropping up.
I was at home grading papers. I had collected in an assignment from the students the previous day and would always spend most of the next day at home grading. So I was sitting on my sofa in front of the TV and after gading for about 2 hours, I decided to take a tea break. I turned on the TV as CNN was playing a replay of the second plane hitting.

I distinctly remember thinking it was some made for TV program, but seconds later, the first tower collapsed and it was then I realized this was real, that it was an actual anchorman speaking in unbelieving tones about a real event that was happening now, in the US.

For several minutes I was in a surreal frame of mind, just trying to comprehend what had happened. Like so many others, my brain just couldn't accept that such a thing was possible - not just one plane, but two, hitting and bring down both towers.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 4:46 pm
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At 8:15 I was walking from Grand Central to my then office at 54th and Madison in Ne York City. Was not aware that the first plane had hit one of the TT's. I had just reached my desk when my boss called and said to put the TV on in the conference room that a small plane had hit one of the Towers. We watched the second plane hit.

I will never forget the quietness of the city that morning. The people walking three and four abreast up Sixth Avenue trying to leave the city. No one spoke. The cars were as quiet as the people. No blaring horns or music. Just a slow and steady march north as all public transportation had come to a complete halt.

Grand Central was allowing three trains out at approximately 2-2:30 p.m. One was for the Harlem line; one for the Hudson line; and one for the New Haven line. Each train was over 20 cars long. All doors were closed at Grand Central and only the ones on 42nd and Park were open and guarded. Cement barriers were already in place around the other doors.

I sat across from a man covered in gray dust who walked up from the Wall Street area. He was on the sidewalk downtown when the towers collapsed. He, like the rest of us, were stone faced, quiet, almost robotic in our movements. Our only thoughts were to leave the city and go home.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 4:50 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

in the pub with a girlfriend having lunch and saw it on the TV screen...we thought it was a james bond stunt till the publican turned up the volume and we realised it was for real.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 5:47 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

Originally Posted by TruBrit
in the pub with a girlfriend having lunch and saw it on the TV screen...we thought it was a james bond stunt till the publican turned up the volume and we realised it was for real.

Similar situation for us. We were back in England because Grandmother-in-law was seriously ill. We had just left the hospital for a break and to get some lunch.
On the way back to the hospital we stopped at an Argos store and while I was paying for a telescopic fishing rod for husband he was watching a silent TV and couldn't quite figure out what was happening. He asked them to turn up the volume and by then whole store watched in horror....
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 6:10 pm
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Default Re: where were you when...

Originally Posted by Sugarmooma
Similar situation for us. We were back in England because Grandmother-in-law was seriously ill. We had just left the hospital for a break and to get some lunch.
On the way back to the hospital we stopped at an Argos store and while I was paying for a telescopic fishing rod for husband he was watching a silent TV and couldn't quite figure out what was happening. He asked them to turn up the volume and by then whole store watched in horror....
I forgot about the time difference. When I first heard about it, it was just past lunch time. Of course, over in America, it was first thing in the morning.
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Old Sep 11th 2007, 6:12 pm
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Woke up. Turned on my msn. A friend had left an offline message. Shock. I wept in horror all day. It was an awful moment.
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