Today is the eleventh anniversary of the September 11 attacks on the United States. It’s hard for me to believe that eleven years passed already. Normally, I take a moment to think about those that died that day and how weird everything was even in Tallahassee after that. My perspective that day was framed by what went on in Tallahassee, but all of the cable coverage I could watch since most of the news websites were not capable of handling so much traffic at the time.
In Tallahassee, it was a beautiful day. The sun was bright, it was warm and calm. I remember being at work and hearing that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. My mind immediately drifted to some sort of small Cessna getting lost. When I was told that a second plane hit the other tower, I remember trying to load up one of the news websites to check it out.
MSNBC.com – Timed out.
CNN.com – Timed out.
CBS – Timed out.
Obviously, something big was going on. I strolled down to a conference room with a TV, which was already huddled with coworkers watching the live broadcast of the Today Show. I wondered if I knew anybody in the towers. Not only do I have family in the area, but a lot of recently graduated friends went to New York and D.C. for work. I wondered why we were being attacked. I hoped that the towers wouldn’t collapse. I remember thinking that this was one of those moments that my future children will ask me about. Where I was, what I was doing and what I remembered.
The rest of the day is a bit of a blur. I’m pretty sure I remember hearing a couple of fighters fly over Tallahassee. That was a comforting and disconcerting sound all at the same time. Other than that, I remember a lot of silence that lasted for weeks. No planes flying, no trains running past my apartment. No flyovers at Doak Campbell Stadium. It was a long time before life got back to a new normal.
Today on the anniversary of that awful day, let’s remember the heroes, pray for the dead and those still suffering and work to make sure that something like that never happens again.