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9/11

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Sep 12th

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Patsfanin Philly

Pro Bowl Player
Over the years, I've posted this a few times. I do forensic work and was on the scene in Western PA by 9/12/01 and spent much of the next year in Medical Examiner's office in NYC helping identify victims of that day....I have relatives who were in the US Capital that day, the intended target of Flight 93.
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Some thoughts from that day, written in the months immediately after....

Reflections of Freedom
As I stood on that mound of dirt and looked out at the Pennsylvania field that September day, I was reminded of a quote by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., "the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands in times of challenge." That recovered strip mine in Somerset County is hallowed ground, as hallowed as the beaches of Normandy, Iwo Jima, Lexington Green or the fields of Gettysburg. It was there that 40 people rose up, joined together to fight back and gave their lives. They were a cross section of America in its truest form. Young and old, married and single, Christian and Jew, straight and gay, black and white, from coast to coast and between they joined together to fight an unspeakable evil.
We'll never know how many people sleep comfortably in their beds tonight thanks to those heroic passengers. It might be your spouse or parents or your children or your nieces or nephews who might have been the intended targets of the hijackers that day. Instead, they made the ultimate sacrifice in that time of challenge.
There were other heroes that day in the Pentagon and at the World Trade Center. From all the military personnel who waded through deadly fire and smoke to rescue unknown comrades because it was the right thing to do to the police officer who died after repeatedly pulling injured survivors out of the burning tower to lead them to safety and going back in to rescue more. Then there's the fire captain who led by example reaching the 78th floor with his men in the hope of rescuing survivors only to lose his life there. I thought of the lawyer who worked in the building next to the World Trade Center who was a part time paramedic grabbing his emergency bag, donning a pair of gloves and while others were fleeing to safety went into harm's way to rescue others and died there.
I thought of these people as we served and felt the awesome responsibility to help identify them and bring them home to their families. It was in that time of challenge and crisis that they acted the way we all hope we would have acted. I thought of them as I drove past nearly three hundred miles of flags of every size and shape on the way back home to my family.
Suddenly, the colors took on a new meaning in a much more personal way. I understand now why the red is a symbol for the blood spilled in the defense of liberty and purity of the white and the valor of the blue. The flag stands for all that is right with America and is as representative of its freedoms today as it was when first sewn over two centuries ago. When my children ask of heroes, I'll tell them of those who fell on 9/11.
MKK September 2001
 

Ian

Administrator
ADMINISTRATOR
This is starting out as a terrific thread. For anyone else who joins in, please help steer clear of any political discussion and focus on remembering those who lost their lives that day. At the time, I worked in the audio/video department at work that morning and I'll never forget watching it all unfold and hearing the stories...it was unreal and it's hard to believe it's already been 18-years since it happened. :(
 

reamer

Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal
I'll never forgot that day.

I was still a young teen in 2001, but I lived near Fort Drum and went to church with many of the responders who flew and drove down to help with the recovery efforts, so the impact always seemed greater than simply watching a horrific attack on TV. Later, some of the members of our congregation shipped out to Afghanistan with the 10th Mountain Division, which is the most deployed unit in the military over the last couple decades. Watching their lives and hearing their stories -- time spent in the rubble at ground zero, the agony of families separated by long deployments -- left an indelible mark on me. I can only imagine how much more traumatic and difficult it was and still is for families of the fallen.

Praying for peace in our world and lives. We've seen good and evil in abundance. I believe good can still triumph. Love can overcome hate. Mercy and justice can prevail. It's not always easy, it's not always convenient, but it matters. We look back and remember -- remembering this hateful tragedy is our solemn and noble duty -- but we don't need to remain in the past. Onward!
 

farn

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Hardship and pain on that day.

I like to remember that on that day, as well as the next few, some fine people (notably the residents of Gander, NFLD) decided to treat strangers like family. These people showed us all that despite challenges and hate - many, many humans are decent. Decent people wanted to help those in pain and that is one of the lasting legacies of the tragedy.
 
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Patsfanin Philly

Pro Bowl Player
Come From Away is a Broadway that details the goodness of the people of New Foundland. Another little known story is the boatlift that helped 500,000 get off Manhattan Island. After the attacks, the bridges and tunnels were shut and all those people who went to the southern tip of Manhattan had no way to get home. The US Coast Guard put out a call for any and all boats in the area to come help and within hours they helped get everyone out whether to Long Island, Jersey or Connecticut. Tom Hanks narrated the story here..



I have a good friend who worked in the city and saw the towers fall. He refused to go back into work there since. He was fortunate to make it to one of the ferries and when the ferry operator tried to collect fares, he ( he was a linebacker for a Big Ten football team) and another guy lifted the man up and moved him aside and told him, " not today bubba" and got everyone on quickly....
 

Pat the Pats Fan

Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract
2020 Weekly NFL Picks Winner
9/11 morning I boarded a flight in Newark to Boston. Got in to Logan terminal as first tower hit. Waiting for a connecting flight, 2nd tower hit....
What started out as a normal business trip quickly turned into anything but.
That meeting I was to attend had people flying in from all over the US. Many were still in the air when the FAA grounded all planes. All of us had no way of getting home or continuing to our meeting site. Cell phones were useless, as all circuits were busy. Rental car counters were crazy, as all cars were gone. My meeting was in Hyannis, I was supposed to fly a puddle jumper, but that too was grounded. I meet a family at the rental counter who offered to let me ride with them to the Cape. They dropped me at the Hyannis airport. There I got my car I had reserved. I was lucky. I was able to drive it back home, with 4 other people from my meeting. 3 continued west, with the car finally being dropped off in Phoenix. It was a somber meeting. That night at dinner, a sports bar / restaurant, the days events were all that was discussed. At some point, not sure who or why, someone started singing God Bless America, the entire restaurant joined in. Busboys, wait staff, cooks came out of the back to join in. That gave me chills....
 
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Chevy

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I was in Bosnia then, working for Sprint. We handled the networking and SatCom for most of the multi-national forces across Bosnia, plus a few sites in Croatia and Hungary.

I was in my office when one of my operators called me and said someone flew a plane into the twin towers. I got down there, thinking it was some drunk idiot in a Cessna. Nope. Saw the live feed of the second jet hitting and kept thinking that they would cut to some ILM guru explaining how they made it look so real.
 

PatsWickedPissah

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So well written and always worth a re-read, especially today.

"There are certain men born in this world, and they're supposed to die setting an example for the weak bastards we're surrounded with"

The Real Heroes Are Dead

Dan Hill says that Susan will understand someday, as he does. “What she doesn’t understand is that she knew him for four or five years. She knew a sixty-two-year-old man with prostate cancer.

I knew him as a hundred-and-eighty-pound, six-foot-one piece of human machinery that would not quit, that did not know defeat, that would not back off one inch. In the middle of the greatest battle of Vietnam, he was singing to the troops, saying we’re going to rip them a new *******, when everyone else was worrying about dying. If he had come out of that building and someone died who he hadn’t tried to save, he would have had to commit suicide.

“I’ve tried to tell Susan this, in a way, but she’s not ready yet for the truth. In the next weeks or months, I’ll get her down here, and we’ll take a walk along the ocean, and I’ll explain these things. You see, for Rick Rescorla, this was a natural death. People like Rick, they don’t die old men. They aren’t destined for that and it isn’t right for them to do so. It just isn’t right, by God, for them to become feeble, old, and helpless sons of *****es. There are certain men born in this world, and they’re supposed to die setting an example for the rest of the weak bastards we’re surrounded with.”
 

mgcolby

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To those who were lost...and to those that lost...and to those of us that were left behind...
 

Hyped

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I flew on United #175 round trip to Los Angeles the week before it was hijacked.

On the morning of 9/11, I remember it being a beautiful day before everything went to ****....and nobody got any work done that day...we all tried to work, but kept finding ourselves walking to the cafeteria to watch the TV's set up non-stop...the Internet was jammed that day...couldn't even post...

At the end of the day...driving home from work, some homeowner put out a sign by the side of the street that read, "We will pass this test".....not sure if we did after 18 years, but at least we got that focker Bin Laden.

All that week it was somber.....but I remember America being very united on 9/12 like I never saw before....
 

Triumph

Hall of Fame Poster
Sad day then and its a sad day now.

Sometimes, old TV shows have scenes of the New York city waterfront and the Towers in them. Reminds me of what was.
 

anditsgood

Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract
I cannot believe it has been 18 years , i was driving to work when the news hit,it wasnt until i got to work and the 2nd hit, and it was televised, when we realized what was going on, everyone thought it was an accident god we lost our innocence that day,
 

fxmallon

On the Game Day Roster
I lived one mile from the WTC and was supposed to attend a modern dance performance that afternoon at the WTC. I also taught a SUNY course there a couple years before--67th floor as I recall. That morning I had a therapy appointment at 10:30 AM and was amazed that the therapist didn't think I should cancel it (new yorkers are tough). The aftermath.... about 8 weeks of breathing toxic smoke mixed with patriotism which before this was rare... we all thought the smoke would never clear, and wondered how many more would die from it... have never been sure of it's impact on me, but we know what it did to countless others (neighboring residents are left out, it seems, of the numbers)
 

Triumph

Hall of Fame Poster
I lived one mile from the WTC and was supposed to attend a modern dance performance that afternoon at the WTC. I also taught a SUNY course there a couple years before--67th floor as I recall. That morning I had a therapy appointment at 10:30 AM and was amazed that the therapist didn't think I should cancel it (new yorkers are tough). The aftermath.... about 8 weeks of breathing toxic smoke mixed with patriotism which before this was rare... we all thought the smoke would never clear, and wondered how many more would die from it... have never been sure of it's impact on me, but we know what it did to countless others (neighboring residents are left out, it seems, of the numbers)

There is a fund set up to assist all affected. I heard it on the radio today. School teachers or anyone it does not matter.

Contact - 911 Cancer Claims
 

patsfan13

Hall of Fame Poster
PatsFans.com Supporter
I worked out of the NJ office for a DB company then. Getting ready to go to the office, beautiful weather, perfect. The TV showed the smoke from the first plane, I saw the second plane fly into the WTC. I drove to work numb, when I arrived I was told that our company was having an event at Windows On The World a Restaurant on the top floor of the South Tower. There were 2 Secretaries setting up for the event, their bodies were never discovered.

I had a neighbor who worked for the Port Authority Police, he was working in the HQ in MidTown he was a Lt., when the First Tower was hit His Boss/Friend a Capt.,decided to go see what had happened, my neigbhor wanted to go with him, the Capt said no to stay, he never saw the Capt again. He attended over 200 funerals of Cops and Firefighters, it took him years to recover.
 

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