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 Post subject: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 9:17 pm 
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Today marks the 9th anniversary (if you can call it that) of the atrocities of September 11th. This date in American history means many different things to many to different people. It's an event in time that defined a generation and reshaped a country.

For me (as I'm sure it was with many others) as the horrific event unfolded, it seemed so surreal. I was at work at the time, as a Warehouse Supervisor for Kroger grocery stores here in Atlanta. Once the second plane hit the towers, and we realized this wasn't just an accident, everything in the distribution center came to a grinding halt. 400 some odd employees, from upper management on down were all crammed into a break area only meant to facilitate 100 people at a maximum. Aside from the occasional shriek of horror, there was dead silence. No one could believe what they were seeing. I didn't even realize it, but tears began streaming down my face as I stared incredulously at the TV screen.

I was fresh out of the military (US Army) at the time. I had barely been a civilian 4 months, and my emotions were off the radar. I may delve into the depth of my feelings at the time, and the weeks and months that followed after I give everyone an opportunity to speak their peace. So the questions I pose to you are:

Where were you when the Towers fell?
What were the emotions you went through?
Did the events change you as a person?
Did it change your worldview?

I'll open this up to everyone willing to participate. I'll understand completely if some don't.

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 9:25 pm 
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I work third shift so I actually slept through all of the craziness. Probably went to bed about an hour before everything started. I woke up late that afternoon, turned on the radio and started trying to piece together what had happened from the reports. I really can't seem to remember feeling anything but numb wondering what it was all going to lead to...

Months later I found out that my dad's cousin (he was a stock broker at the time) just happened to be in Manhatten that day and was in the second tower on the 18th floor. I'm not sure of all the details, but the group he was with decided to get out as soon as they heard/felt the first tower get hit. They made it to the street about the time the second plane made impact.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 10, 2010 10:11 pm 
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That's an amazing story Jim. He was incredibly fortunate.

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 12:49 am 
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I was sleeping when it initially happened. My girlfriend at the time at the time came in and woke me up as the news was hitting TV. I was in shock and disbelief something like that could even happen. I'm 36 now and that day is still the most surreal day in my life. I couldn't pull myself away from the television and the mall where I worked gave all stores permission to close for that day and the following if we so chose. I was running a couple KB Toy Stores at the time so I called my employees and gave them 2 days off. I pretty much just sat around for two days completely stunned while watching TV,

As far as if it changed me as a person? Not really. It did finally make me realize the level of contempt some people can have for us as a nation and a way of life. It certainly made me more appreciative of firefighters, policemen/women and emergency responders.

Good thread to start Alcinde...


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 6:33 am 
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I was working as a Restaurant manager in a 5 star hotel. Just getting done setting up a catering room for a lunch break out for some business guests in the building when one of the other managers ran in with news of the first crash.

We all raced out to the lobby to see the updates and then the 2nd plane hit.

It was chaos in the hotel from that point forward.

By the time everyone was able to get to a phone, or get through on their cels, we had to start re-arranging everything from room reservations to restaurant service hours to concierge setting up an on-site counselling group.

I felt numb most of that day and the rest of the week that followed.

I can't imagine having actually been there or to have lost someone in that disaster.

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 7:42 am 
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I had just woken up and was ready to take a shower. Turned the tv on, it was on every channel. Still not sure what was going on i watched for information. When i heard what i heard i was in shock that something like this could happen in this country. Today is my mom's birthday and it was the first birthday since her death which was in january on my birthday so it was already an emotional day for me. Such a tragic day that will remain with every american forever.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 9:11 am 
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I was in chemistry class. They let us watch the tv for about 10 minutes and then we continued with school the rest of the day.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 9:56 am 
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alcinde4 wrote:
Where were you when the Towers fell?
What were the emotions you went through?
Did the events change you as a person?
Did it change your worldview?


I woke up at my normal time to go to work (remember I'm out in AZ so it was probably around 6 AM my time) when I heard on the radio that a plane had hit the first tower. I immediately woke up my wife and we went into the living room to watch the TV just in time to have the second plane hit. We were stunned. I took a shower and got back out just in time to see the first Tower fall.

We sat in shock. I eventually got dressed and saw the second Tower fall before I left. Then the reports about the Pentagon came in. Or maybe it was before; some of the details are starting to blur after so many years.

I will never forget seeing a 747 about 1000 feet up making an emergency landing at the regional airport near my house (Gateway Airport for those in AZ). There I was driving out of my subdivision and there was this plane. This gigantic plane with landing gear out seeming to be about to descend right into my neighborhood.

Did it change me? Absolutely.

Did it alter my worldview? Without a doubt.

I was on the fence about having children before 9/11. After 9/11, I became convinced that I didn't want to bring kids into a world where that can happen.

I really wish people would understand the threat radical Islam presents. We need to stop pussyfooting around and get the job done by any means necessary in order to preserve our way of life. How come we could do what we had to do back in World War II, but not now? We haven't fought a war the way it needs to be fought since Korea (and even then, Truman blinked).

If we don't get our s#@& together, I'm convinced a mushroom cloud on American soil is in our future.

Normally, I'd be more circumspect on this board, but not today. :evil:

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 11:22 am 
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The event itself was sort of hazy blur to me as it unfolded, but I wont go into that.

What I will speak on is the adverse effect it's had on my life. I'm of mixed ethnicity, being half Pakistani and half Indian (which presents an entirely different set of problems if you know anything about the region) my life was made a living hell. I was born and raised in the US, I only speak english and I've never been to either of my parents' home countries. Of course none of this mattered immediately following 9-11. There was so much narrow-minded hatred spewed in my direction and that of my family.

Everywhere I went, I was met with undue scrutiny and whispers if not outright hate-mongering. I've been beat up, spit on, and called just about every racial epithet in the book. I became a recluse/shut-in for over two years. It's just within the last couple of years that I've been able to enjoy a somewhat normal life. The sad thing in all of this is that I love this country. I always have. But while going through this, I several times questioned my patriotism, and oftentimes questioned my own willingness to live.

Oh, and here's the kicker. I'm not Muslim. Never have been. I'm a non-denominational Christian. Funny right? Yeah, maybe not so much.

That's my take on it. For whatever it's worth.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 12:02 pm 
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Man, I'm really, really sorry that you and your family had to go through that. Ignorance is certainly not bliss. Several friends of mine had similar experiences post 9-11. A couple Indian friends, a hispanic friend and a caucasian friend of Greek descent who apparently could pass for Afghani (idiots :roll:), were all "identified" as terrorists. Not by any federal government organization mind you, but by the neanderthals in my neighborhood. It made me embarrassed.

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 12:27 pm 
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I'm not a US citizen, I live in Argentina but here the event impacted a lot.

It was between 12:00 to 13:00 p.m. here, I was in Buenos Aires international airport (yeah the right place to be!) because me and my family were waiting for my grandma who was returning from Italy.
11/9 here is a holiday, it's the "teacher's day" that's why I had the day off, ok moving on with the story I was walking around the airport with my cousin when we heard a couple of english tourists talking about a "missile that hit the pentagon" my cousin doesn't understand a word of english but he recognized the word "pentagon" and asked me what the tourists were talking about. I explained to him but we thought that they were discussing a movie or something like that since that happening in real life was something impossible.
We were proved wrong when me and my family arrived to my grandma's house and turned on the TV, as a kid (I was 13 at that time) I couldn't believe it I mean this stuff only happened in comic books or movies.
What I felt? fear just 6 years before 9/11 we had a couple of terrorism acts here in Argentina, and I started to believe that this was going to be a chain reaction that will end in world war 3 (again I was a kid).
What I truly made me learn was that this world is full with evil, the real kind of evil, that it can be reflected in anything but in the acts of this evil doers.
The event did not change me as a person, but it definitely changed the way I see the world today.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sat Sep 11, 2010 12:54 pm 
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Sleeping at first. Live on Long Island, but later in the day the stench of burning plastic and other foul smells actually reached that far.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 11:24 am 
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I was in science class. The teacher informed us around 10 o'clock that the towers had been hit. She didn't have a TV in her classroom so we didn't really hear much more 'til later on.


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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Sun Sep 12, 2010 5:01 pm 
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I was heading to work, carpooling with a friend. We were headed east on Route 3 in New Jersey. Flipping radio stations we heard a snippet about a plane hitting the first tower. My friend went to change the station and I told him to wait, there was something more to this. We listened to the reports. We looked up to the skyline and saw the smoke. Surreal. Once we got to work everyone huddled around a radio. I just remember the feeling of disconcerting helplessness as the reports continued to roll in. "When is this going to stop?," I remember asking myself.

Its probably made me more cynical about a lot of things, near and far.

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 Post subject: Re: Where were you when the Towers fell?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 13, 2010 8:16 am 
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alcinde4 wrote:
Where were you when the Towers fell?
I was at work. A colleague came into my office to tell me a plane had flown into one of the Trade towers. That was all the detail he had gotten from the radio at that point, and I was thinking something like what happened when Cory Lidle died. I turned on the radio to get updates, and I was listening to that when all the other plane hit and the towers fell. When the second one hit, I knew exactly what was happening.

alcinde4 wrote:
What were the emotions you went through?
I was just worried about the people I knew who lived in the area and worked at the Trade. One friend had the day off, but three were there. They weren't able to escape.

alcinde4 wrote:
Did the events change you as a person?
Not at all.

alcinde4 wrote:
Did it change your worldview?
Not at all.

anti-matterequation wrote:
The event itself was sort of hazy blur to me as it unfolded, but I wont go into that.

What I will speak on is the adverse effect it's had on my life. I'm of mixed ethnicity, being half Pakistani and half Indian (which presents an entirely different set of problems if you know anything about the region) my life was made a living hell. I was born and raised in the US, I only speak english and I've never been to either of my parents' home countries. Of course none of this mattered immediately following 9-11. There was so much narrow-minded hatred spewed in my direction and that of my family.

Everywhere I went, I was met with undue scrutiny and whispers if not outright hate-mongering. I've been beat up, spit on, and called just about every racial epithet in the book. I became a recluse/shut-in for over two years. It's just within the last couple of years that I've been able to enjoy a somewhat normal life. The sad thing in all of this is that I love this country. I always have. But while going through this, I several times questioned my patriotism, and oftentimes questioned my own willingness to live.

Oh, and here's the kicker. I'm not Muslim. Never have been. I'm a non-denominational Christian. Funny right? Yeah, maybe not so much.

That's my take on it. For whatever it's worth.
First of all, yeah, the ethnic mix is definitely an interesting one.

More importantly, though, stuff like this should never happen to anyone who lives here. Your religion shouldn't matter. Just two days after the attacks, I was in a convenience store in my old neighborhood. The clerk who worked there (he was Pakistani) had just placed an American flag sticker on his car in a showing of solidarity. Unfortunately, he had done it in the dark, and the sticker ended up being upside down on the back of his vehicle. This was completely inadvertent, but a couple of trashy customers took it as a deliberate sign of disrespect. As the guy tried explaining that it was a mistake, they kept getting louder and closer to him until I finally had to step in front of them and let them know nothing was going to happen to the clerk.

That's not patriotism, and anyone who acts like that never bothered to learn what it's supposed to mean to be an American in the first place. Country of origin, skin color, religion, whatever... No one does his/her country any favors by using these differences as a reason to be hostile and abusive toward one's neighbors. It's just bigotry and xenophobia being excused by blind, misguided nationalism. It doesn't happen to white, Christian males due to the actions of Timothy McVeigh, Scott Roeder, Eric Rudolph, or this latest would-be psycho up the interstate from here, Justin Moose. If we use any of this to behave so horribly toward anyone who doesn't look like they're straight out of an episode of The Brady Bunch, then what exactly is the U.S. supposed to be protecting? How is that worth defending? It's not. We have to be better than that.


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