Tuesday, September 11, 2001 is a day that many United States citizens will remember. Many of us who lived through the tragedy can remember turning on the news to watch the startling event that took place in New York City. We all have a story to tell about how we heard the news, and how it impacted us personally. These are just a few of our stories.
That September morning I had the news on as I was getting ready to go volunteer at a local elementary school in town. On this particular day, I was scheduled to help with vision and hearing testing of students in grades K-3. I remember having the television turned to the local NBC station in order to catch local news and weather. All of the sudden, the national news anchors cut into the local programming. As soon as they began speaking, it was obvious that something urgent was happening in the world. Expecting that I would hear the name of a foreign country in their report, I wandered toward the television screen. I was shocked and horrified that the event they were describing was happening on U.S. soil. I watched as they kept showing airplanes flying into buildings in New York City. It took my breath away, and brought tears to my eyes. I had already experienced the Oklahoma City bombing, and now another tragedy. -Lisa Warren
As my young daughters and I walked into the hotel breakfast room, everyone was staring at the TV. The first trade tower had been hit. I thought it was a movie. Stunned, I watched the second tower get hit on the TV back in our room. We were on a business trip with my husband. He was not allowed to leave the military base in Oklahoma City, and our communication by phone was limited all day. That night he was allowed to leave and we joined a very long line at the gas station so we could drive the two hours to return home. We fielded phone calls to and from family and friends checking on each other. Everything was so surreal and heartbreaking. So many unanswered questions. -Paula Smith
I was in my junior year at UCO (University of Central Oklahoma). I woke up for school and noticed my mom had the TV on CNN, which she rarely did. By the time I was up, both towers had been hit but were still standing. I remember sitting by the fireplace and thinking not again, thinking back to the Murrah building bombing. I didn’t know if I should get ready for class or stay home. A part of me just wanted to go about business as usual, maintain some normalcy. So that’s what I did. I went to school. The campus was eerily silent and no one was around. Campus wasn’t officially closed yet but it was like everyone unanimously agreed that staying in was what should be done. Eventually classes were cancelled for the day. I went back home and glued myself to the TV. It brought back so many memories of watching rescuers sift through the rubble of the Murrah building and the horror that a person could intentionally hurt so many people. My dad was missing for a few hours after the Murrah bombing and it was sheer terror until he could finally check in. I couldn’t help but think of all the loved ones that were terrified, waiting for their mom, dad, brother, uncle to check in and they never did. That is the memory that stands out for me. The ache for the people waiting for a text or call that never came. –Courtney Weymouth
I was still in school at that time, in ninth grade. It started out like any other day, until I got to humanities class. It was unusual to see the teacher turn on the news for class. I don’t recall if we had a regular lesson that day or not. We watched the news, and discussed the current event, as the news repeatedly ran the footage of the plane hitting the second tower. I remember fellow students talking about enlisting in the coming war, others discussing the threat of a local terror attack. Most importantly, I remember how the national tragedy brought people together. During those weeks when we were all concerned about the safety the people of New York we were not Democrat, Republican, rich, or poor—we were all Americans. -Micah Black
On September 11, I was 5 years old and in Kindergarten. It was picture day, and suddenly everyone was getting picked up from school. My sister and I were some of the only ones who stayed. When we got home, our dad was there, which never happened that early in the day. He worked in downtown Houston, and they had sent everyone home for fear of more attacks in major cities. My parents sat us down on our couch and told us that someone had attacked two big buildings in New York. I remember my parents never letting us watch the news for a long time after that day. It was the first time we ever really felt fear. But I will never forget the swell of patriotism that swept through our community. Every day, we sang a different patriotic song in school, they even played patriotic music on the radio, and it felt like we all had more pride as Americans. –Hannah Baxter
These were our experiences, and the way we remember hearing about the tragedy that all Americans felt at that time. What was your experience? What do you remember about September 11, 2001?
I began my career with Mardel in 2006, while earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from the University of Oklahoma. While I love to write fiction and convey stories through novels, I also have a passion for studying philosophy, theology, and apologetics. I enjoy the faith-building resources available at Mardel, and look forward to sharing what new topics and information I’m learning.