The memory of 9-11 (part 1)

United States
September 24, 2008 12:36pm CST
AN ORDINARY DAY It was just another ordinary day in Chicago. I was assigned to the safety office of the local terminal of my trucking company for light duty after an on the job injury. I left the motel early and headed to the terminal for breakfast in the cafeteria. I paid for my food and headed in to find a table in the unusually busy drivers room. There was a tense buzz of activity and most of the drivers seemed glued to the TV. I asked one what was going on and was told there was a plane crash in New York. Turning my attention to the TV while I ate I gathered that an airliner had collided with one of the twin towers of the World Trade Center. Where was it headed? How did it go off course? How did the pilot run into such an obvious obstacle? What went wrong with the plane? How many were hurt? How many were killed? How were they going to handle a fire that high in the building? How many were trapped above the fire? These questions and more criss-crossed the room and the news wires as we watched the smoking hole in the side of the skyscraper. I checked out the reporting on a couple TVs to try and gather more info but it was nothing but more questions. My time was running out so I gathered my things and headed for the office to start my work day. The tragedy of the crash would be investigated and the news would have more information at lunch time. A SOUND OF DISTANT THUNDER As I walked through the second drivers room on my way to work I glanced at the TV one more time and was stopped in my tracks. Gasps and expletives ran through the room and even the newscasters could find nothing reasonable to say. A second plane came into camera range, the engines whining with acceleration, and plowed through the second tower. This was no accident. Thunder rolled through the streets of New York. Thunder rocked the Pentagon in Washington, DC. Thunder resounded through the hills of Pennsylvania. Thunder shook the country and the world as we all watched in shock as Americans were murdered on a scale we hadn't imagined. Situated a few blocks form the Sears Tower people in the terminal began asking if we should evacuate. Drivers called in to see if they should run or stay put. Drivers called to ask if they were safe, if their destinations were safe, if their families were safe. Families called in to see if their drivers were safe. they asked where their loved ones were assigned. People began looking for the first route home to see to their families and friends. No one knew what to do. WE ARE AT WAR We later learned that the Sears Tower had been a target. Like nearly a dozen other targets around the country it was saved by quick action in stopping air traffic or by the luck of the draw as terror cell members had been picked up for other offenses or delayed by unforeseen actions. Someone attacked our country. Someone slaughtered our friends, family members, neighbors and fellow Americans. Someone was going to pay. There was no doubt we were at war. This unprecedented attack had finally gone farther than the worst nightmares of Pearl Harbor. the only questions left were: Where do we go? Who do we kill? When are we Going? politicians wanted to know why it happened but most Americans didn't care. News casters debated what we should do but the rest of us prepared for battle. (to be continued)
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3 responses
@4magoo (396)
24 Sep 08
It is a very interesting story and all of us have been a part of history as it plays out. I am sure this will never leave you.
3 people like this
@anniepa (26629)
• United States
25 Sep 08
I'm sorry to horn in on our response here, 4magoo, but sometime kennyrose makes it impossible not to. So, Rose, this terrorist wiretapping you're not bi+ching that Obama says he'll stop, isn't that the same wiretapping you were bi+ching about a few weeks ago because Obama had voted for it? I must apologize to the OP here for taking your bait and aiding you in turning wehat had been a sensitive post about a horrible day in our history and turning it into an anti-Obama rant. You should be ashamed, Rose, it's really a disgrace. Annie
1 person likes this
• United States
25 Sep 08
I had actually hoped that this discussion would focus on the current political ramifications of the attacks. I hear so often that politicians and news people are living in a pre-9/11 world. People say that we have forgotten what that day was like. Radio hosts lament that we don't give enough coverage to what started the "War on Terror". the fact is, I believe, that there are those in power who would like us to forget but the impact of that day has effected so many world wide that the average person will never forget what happened. Louise is correct about this being a bit of a long story but the point, as will be seen in the rest of the story, is to show that we are still living in the shadow of that day.
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@commanderxo (1496)
• Canada
25 Sep 08
It was a shock to all of us, even up here in Canada...and incredibly hard to believe.
• United States
25 Sep 08
Thanks commander, 9/11 moved us all but it wasn't the first time. When the Trade center was bombed, When the embassies were bombed, when the USS Cole was bombed, when so many other attacks against us occurred the world at large sat up to take notice. These things left our memories as the people in power failed to respond. With each unanswered attack the enemies of peace grew bolder and less fearful of the "paper tiger" in the US. It is truly sad that we had to wait until this massive strike on our own soil before they woke the "sleeping dragon". I can't say I agree with all the policies in force but there is an important debate going on between those who would grant greater weight to the rights of our enemies than to the security of our nation. I believe that liberty and security can live in harmony if men(and women) of good conscience make the effort.
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• Canada
25 Sep 08
It would appear that OUR "constitutions" are of the same character. Very well spoken Carl.
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• United States
24 Sep 08
This is really long..You may want to write for Associated Content or HubPages. I am Pretty sure that they would like your story! But everyone I have spoke to knows where they were and what they were doing at the moment that they found out we were under attack.
@4magoo (396)
24 Sep 08
I agree with you. We all know where we were and what we were doing. :-) I was almost ready for bed when the first one hit and almost immediately I concluded it was a terrorist attack. I forget what time we actually got to bed but it was quite late. In a similar manner I remember where I was when Kennedy was shot. (I am a lot older than you). I was playing hookey with my sister and we were home watching TV.
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