… I feel that the country is looking at this day with a yawn, not remembering the horror as nearly 3000 souls were lost. I remember all too well…
From Remembering 9/11:
Sitting at my desk at another plant on assignment five years ago, I was finishing up some report when someone came in the office and announced that a plane had hit one of the World Trade Center buildings. I really didn’t think much of it at the time, and thought that some joy riding pilot in a Cessna got too close to one of the buildings, got caught in an updraft, and slammed into the building.
I finished up the report, and went out on the floor to check on the project’s progress, and I happened to see one of the TVs the company had set up for internal communications. Someone had put the feed from one of the national networks on the network, and I saw the WTC burning. I was stunned for two reasons – the first was that it was such a clear day, so how could someone accidentally hit one of the buildings. The second was that I just couldn’t understand how a small plane could cause so much damage. That’s when I saw the second plane hit…
Dumbfounded, I suddenly realized that the first plane was not a Cessna or other small plane, but a full-sized, passenger-carrying jet. I next understood that this was deliberate, because there was absolutely no way that two planes could hit the WTC buildings on the same clear day. Then there was the overwhelming sense of sadness, grief, hopelessness as the dawning of a new thought came to mind…
Terrorism, unlike anything that we have ever known, had come to America.
I watched, horrified along with the rest of the country, as the towers came down mere minutes from each other. I couldn’t understand that at the time – this was the last thing that I had expected. I had known that the Empire State Building had been struck by a B-25 bomber and had survived with minimal damage – why not a modern building? But that was not the case here – too big, too much fuel, too much heat – and the towers collapsed. And I wept openly as I watched the plumes of dust rise over the island of Manhattan.
There have been the usual specials on various channels with stories of survivors, eye-witnesses, and officials that were involved that day. I can’t watch them – I remember too much of the horror of watching people jumping from burning buildings on live TV and watching a plane crash into the World Trade Center.
Instead, I offer this tribute for one of the victims, Klaus Johannes Sprockamp.
May we never, ever forget this day. I won’t.