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Where Were You That September Day?

As we hit the sixteenth anniversary of the September eleventh attacks, I look back and feel that it was that date that the world changed for everyone. From that moment on, the world became a completely different place to be in. As a kid, this was my second national tragedy with Columbine being the first that I was old enough to remember. I didn't understand it at the time the attacks. But as an adult, I understand the feelings I had at the time. So where was I on that day?


I was ten when it happened, I was home with my grandfather and I watched the news with him while in the kitchen eating breakfast. At first, we couldn't take our eyes off of it. I was glued to it and didn't take my eyes off of watching the first tower up in smoke, staining the peaceful skies with black. I was mesmerized and dazed at it. Then, the second tower was hit that reality started to set in. I was a smart kid, slow, still am, but smart. But just then I felt that something wasn't right. My realization was that there was a much bigger world out there and that it is a lot darker than I thought it was. 

It hit harder when The Pentagon was hit and the first tower fell. For the first time I didn't feel just my emotions, I felt the emotions of others as well, it felt so thick you would need a chainsaw to cut through it. Then the second tower fell, followed by the images of people covered in soot and dust from the buildings being hit and more so from them falling. Though I was never sheltered from things as a kid, it was still a wake up call.


Once the day was over, the after effects happened. Memorials, extensive coverage, seeing the aftermath after the dust settled, and people's reactions. Seeing the twisted metal and debris on the ground. Fire Fighters working nonstop to find survivors, police working nonstop to keep the peace. It was nice and still is to this day, to see the unity within the chaos. That there was still good in the world, and for the first time in my life I saw our country unite and help each other. It was a time to comfort, heal, and to come together under one symbol, the American flag and unite as a country. 

It's amazing how a span of sixteen years from that day can change everything. Looking back, that was the day that the peaceful time in the world was over, but it also showed what happens when people unite and set aside their differences and flaws to help those in need. So if anything, love one another and tell those you care about that you love them, because who knows how long they'll be around. 


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DirtyD79 Posted on Sep 21, 2017 at 06:42 AM

I was in college back then. I was asleep when it happened since it was my day off. My mom woke me up telling me I should come out and check out the news. That's how I found out about it.

Superman Posted on Sep 13, 2017 at 12:41 PM

I was at school (7th grade) when the attacks happened and didn't know anything until late in the afternoon when we watched the news during social studies class. I guess limiting news coverage to that one class was my school's way of trying to keep the school day as normal as possible.

comic_book_fan Posted on Sep 13, 2017 at 06:18 AM

i was in the 5th grade at first the teacher told us it was an accident it was muted in the back ground then the 2nd plane hit and my teacher looked shocked and and un muted the tv and we just watched in the coverage the whole day trying to figure out what was going on didn't fully know until i got home i wasn't scared at first until i got home and it really sunk in i remember a mix of fear and anger from everyone

Vaporman87 Posted on Sep 13, 2017 at 01:58 AM

I never thought you were stating anything regarding who instigated or carried out the attacks. I was trying to understand what country or countries you were referring to. By my calculation, approximately no new haters were gained.

blueluigi Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 10:17 PM

Okay, I won't argue much about my previous response as I don't want to start another shitshow. I just want to refute a few things as I feel like my last sentence was taken out of context.

I wasn't saying that Bush did 9/11. That last sentence was more so connected to the aftermath, where he declares war with Iraq, a country that has virtually nothing to do with the attacks, which Bush himself later admitted to be true. And yes, I know other countries hated us before that. I never said that no country on the planet hated us until Bush came to office, because, yeah, that is a load of crap. I was saying that Bush's response to the 9/11 is on fanning the flames on this situation. That is a part of it. Please read that last paragraph again more carefully before throwing any more accusations at me.

We can go into actual theories as to what and who started 9/11, but I prefer not to. That's all I will say, I'm not going any further. Just wanted to address what was taken out of context.

Rick Ace Rhodes Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 03:05 PM

@blueluigi Other countries have hated us long before George W. Bush took office. The September 11th attacks were being planned as early the 1980's.

Vaporman87 Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 01:26 PM

@blueluigi: "Thanks to George W. Bush for making other countries hate us (and our current president, Donald Trump for that matter)."

Please tell me you don't really believe that BS blue. Really? Wake up man. Please name a country that didn't already despise our way of life? G.W. Bush didn't even have time to do anything relevant before we were attacked. No... these places hate us for who WE are. Not who our President is.

You can argue that Presidents have added to that hatred and I think that is a discussion worth having (in Obama's case I would argue he even appeased our haters which was stupid), but it's just ignorant to believe nobody hated us until G.W. Bush was President. Let's not forget that it was under Bill Clinton that these same people attacked the Trade Center the first time.

blueluigi Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 05:43 AM

The first I heard about it was during a car ride on my way to school. A friend of my sister's was telling us about these planes that hit the World Trade Center. After hearing that, this was talked about in class. Many people were shaken up during that event. I also remember coming home from school and seeing most TV programming being preempted for 9/11 coverage. I recall one of the only other networks that aired regular programming was USA Network with the Street Fighter movie.

Still, this is a day that is very depressing looking back at it. It's a reminder that this world is not what we want it to be. That there's so much evil in mankind, regardless of who it is that started these attacks. It also doesn't help that our country went to war with a completely irrelevant country, with lots of innocent people killed because of that too. Thanks to George W. Bush for making other countries hate us (and our current president, Donald Trump for that matter).

Benjanime Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 05:17 AM

i was in the middle of a history class when it was on the news. pretty much like how vkimo described, the students in my class reacted in the same way. some of our classwork was even cut that day just to watch what we could on the incident.

vkimo Posted on Sep 12, 2017 at 12:00 AM

I was a freshman as well, my mom told me what happened as I woke up. It didn't register until I got to school and every class was just people staring, jaws open, at the TV screens. Teachers were crying, it was intense.

I always felt we should have built the world's highest skyscraper on ground zero's foundation as a sign to the world that the US was still number one.

Mr Magic Posted on Sep 11, 2017 at 09:25 PM

I was a freshman in high school. I was in art class when someone turned on the TV and we found out the horrific news.

NLogan Posted on Sep 11, 2017 at 09:16 PM

My wife and I were getting ready to go to school. We were in college. We heard it first on the radio and then ran down a few apartments to our friend's place. They had cable. We watched live as the second plane hit and people started jumping from the upper floors who were trapped. We watched as two more planes were hijacked one hit the Pentagon and one went down in a field. We went to school but nearly every class cancelled. There were crowds around the televisions in the Student Center. I was taken back to junior high remembering watching the night battles in Iraq with tracer rounds and explosions. I knew we would be sucked into another war. My friends left for NY to help. I visited Washington D.C. in December of that year. I photographed the hole in the Pentagon draped by a huge flag. I went to a memorial display at the Smithsonian that had hundreds of personal items: wallets, phones, shoes, photos, rings, etc. from people who lost their lives in the towers. I saw crushed firetrucks and first responder vehicles. A few years later I went to NY and saw the cleanup and construction where the two towers used to be. I will always remember.

Rick Ace Rhodes Posted on Sep 11, 2017 at 08:39 PM

I was in school when it happened. First grade at the time. Barely even into the school year at that point. We had art class that morning. I don't know if we were forced to leave art class early or if we just left at the standard time, but it was after art class that everything went wrong. As we were walking back to class, the vice principal was walking down the hall and told us "Code Red". Our teacher informed us that this wasn't a drill and that it was serious. As we were walking by the door that was the entrance to the school, I saw my mother among a swarm of parents signing out their kids to bring them home early. After sitting in the classroom for a few minutes, I was pulled out by mother and taken home. After being home for a few minutes, my father arrived home cursing and shouting at the TV. I don't really remember the rest of the day.

The weeks that followed I do remember. It was a pretty emotional time, especially for my town. I came from a town that had a lot of first responders to the attack. To add to the sad climate, a girl who was in my class lost her father in the attacks. Everyday we wore flag pins to school to show our support.

Even as a young kid it was impossible to be shielded from what happened. In some way I guess I'm glad that I and my fellow classmates were so young at the time. We didn't have to experience the horror like many others here on Retro Daze had to as young adults or even teenagers in High School.

Vaporman87 Posted on Sep 11, 2017 at 04:42 PM

I was with my wife (then girlfriend) in my work truck, delivering cylinders. We had stopped at a gas station to pick up something to eat. When I returned I heard on the news that a plane had hit the WTC. At first, I thought they meant a small passenger plane. Like some random person might have lost control and hit it. Then the second plane hit and more details emerged. These were not small planes, and it was no accident. The rest of the day I spent listening in on the radio as I worked. Then when I returned to the office I watched the images and was horrified.

Like you said, never before had I felt more of a camaraderie with my fellow citizens than the weeks following the attacks. We were a country united under one common cause. Politics, race, social standing... all of that was gone for a brief moment in time. Tragic as it was, there was also beauty. Naturally, that wouldn't last. But it's something I can carry with me forever.

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