Ten years ago today was the most surreal day any of us has ever had to live through. September 11, 2001 was a day that, as the year have passed, it has been asked of all of us to “Never Forget.” So we haven’t. On the 10th anniversary, those of us at KK BOLD wanted to share some of our memories of that day.
Amanda Lynn Moser
When I first heard that the tower was hit, I was dropping my little sister off at school and it came across on Y-93. The impact didn’t hit me until I got to school and we began to watch the live footage. Our class was late to senior orientation because we had become so absorbed in what was happening.
I remember the big debate between classes was which teachers would have the television on. Some showed it because of the history that was happening, some wouldn’t show it because of the violence and watching the people fall from the Towers.
The other vivid memory I had was my parents reading an evening paper. I had never seen 2 newspapers printed in one day.
Sept. 11th 2001 started out as just another beautiful fall day for me. I was living in Minneapolis, MN at the time. I woke up to bluebirds chirping outside my bedroom window and deer in my backyard, almost straight out of a Garrison Keillor story. I had the day off so after I took my Siberian husky Stevie for an early walk, came home to have some breakfast and gear up for a day of work on the house and a rehearsal later that evening. Not really being one to watch early morning news programs, I came across the news reports of the attacks purely by accident, and found myself sitting on the edge of my bed trying to make sense of what I was watching. “It can’t be” I told myself, thinking it must be a trailer for a new Bruce Willis movie. As it slowly sunk in that what I was watching was reality and not a movie preview, I began to feel numb and angry.
In the hours and days that followed, I crossed through a broad spectrum of emotions, and still do to this day. But I have come to the realization that the beauty of every day is the fact that I get the opportunity to do it again, to get it and live it better than the day before. The victims of 9/11 no longer have that opportunity, for me that’s why the emotions associated with that day run so deep. It’s easy to get lost in those emotions, until you realize you owe it to yourself to kick that can just a little farther down the road every day. After an event like this progress is worthless without healing, and both are needed to hit the reboot button every morning.
I remember September 11, 2001.
I remember the morning as we watched the news together in the lobby of our office. I remember the reporters scrambling for information. I remember the shock as we watched the second plane strike.
I remember the disbelief as the first tower fell and I remember the horror as the second one followed. I remember the concern as word of the crashes in D.C and Pennsylvania spread.
I remember thinking about my family and worrying about their safety.
I remember feeling helpless seeing the stunned survivors with gray faces make their way through the devastation. I remember overwhelming anger. I remember hoping we would turn the entire Middle East into a parking lot.
I remember hanging a picture of the American flag in my window.
I remember the term Ground Zero being etched in my brain and I remember the images of the brave searching through the twisted rubble.
I remember feeling proud to be an American.
I remember the sadness as loved ones wept and I remember being choked up as stories of heroes emerged. I remember the endless days of funerals.
I remember wondering how to explain it to my young son.
I remember knowing I would never forget. I remember.
I was working at KBMY TV (the ABC affiliate in Bismarck) at the time. I was the first to arrive at the office that day so I unlocked the doors to the office and turned on the reception area television just as the 2nd plane hit. I just stood there stunned – like it was some sort of bad joke or something until the board operator came up and told me what was happening. I’ll never forget that moment – it was just so surreal. At the time I worked with many people from New York and I spent much of the day corresponding with them making sure the people I worked with were ok. Thankfully they were, but many of them lost family members and friends that day.
In the fall of 2001, I was starting my sophomore year of college at Minnesota State University Moorhead, settling into a new apartment and the routine of work and classes. September 11 was just another day. I was up early, getting ready to head to my Desktop Publishing class. I had just gotten a bowl of cereal, sat down on the couch and flipped on the TV. The first plane had just hit and no one was sure yet what exactly had happened. I yelled at my roommates to come see and we watched, thinking it was just a horrible accident, until I had to leave. I walked into my class that morning and everyone was glued to their computers. I sat down by my friend, Liz, and she asked if I’d seen what was going on and said a second plane had hit the towers. Confused, I pulled up a news website trying to find information. My professor came in and we had class as usual that day. Later he sent an email to all of us apologizing for not canceling. For days after, I remember not wanting to do anything but watch the news. I was both captivated by and incredibly sad watching the images and hearing the stories. It crazy to think it’s been 10 years already. I can still remember such small details of that day…I ate Cheerios, I sat in the second row of class…yet it seems like such a blur. Still today, even after I’ve seen the World Trade Center site in NYC, it’s hard to believe such a terrible thing happened. Now, September 11 is anything but “just another day”. On that day, when American flags are flying high, I always feel incredibly proud and remember how lucky I am to live in such an amazing place.
I was living in Minot and working at the North Dakota State Fair. As I pulled up to work that morning, I was listening to Bob and Sheri on the radio and right before I turned my car off Sheri said in a semi-nervous tone, as she interrupted her morning show partner, “Bob, wait. There is breaking news about a plane hitting the World Trade Center.” I went into the office, immediately mentioned it to some coworkers what I just heard.
We went into the break room to watch the TV and 8 of us stood around and silently watched the video and learned the rest of the story. Periodically each person would leave to go call a family member/friend. As a mid-20’s American girl, I was quite naïve. I remember feeling so vulnerable. My callow impression of the world was now tarnished.
It’s weird the things that one remembers. Especially in my brain. I can remember minute details to a movie I have no intention of ever watching again, or the precise workings of a video game I played 20 years ago, but can manage to forget to stick a dollar bill in my daughter’s backpack for some school function.
But I find the minute details of the morning of September 11th, 2001 to be somewhat interesting. It was a Tuesday. I remember that because we had a staff meeting at work that morning. I also remember that we met in the space that is now our remodeled break room, which at the time was a secondary meeting room. I don’t remember why we weren’t meeting in the “real” conference room.
So we were just heading in and Jim Fuglie, who was an Account Executive at the time, was a couple minutes late getting to the meeting. When he walked in he stated in a semi-wondering voice that a plane just crashed into the World Trade Center. He didn’t know anything more than that, he’d just heard about it when walking by the TV in our reception area and watched for a minute or two.
We finished our meeting, prepared as a staff to “rock and roll”, and returned to our desks. I didn’t think much more on the plane crash – at the time it was just that – a plane crash. I wondered a bit if it was an air traffic control error, pilot error, mechanical malfunction…but didn’t think much more about it. Plane crashes happen, and there was work to be done.
Then I heard a general buzzing throughout the office – conversation louder and more urgent than the standard fare. It was enough for me to pull myself out of my computer screen and wander out into the hallway. When I started walking toward where I heard voices, they suddenly went quite still. I kept walking and came to a gathering of about half of my coworkers, all huddled around the tiny television we used to have in the reception area, watching the news.
I murmered to someone asking what happened and they whispered that a second plane had crashed into the other tower.
Only then did thoughts aside from mechanical failure and pilot error enter my mind. Complacency had been shunted away for a time.
The rest of the day is mostly a blur. I do recall being quite distracted for the rest of the work day – trying to concentrate and failing, putting myself back to the task at hand again and again.
And I remember being angry. Very, very angry.
It was a gorgeous morning with brilliant blue skies, a Tuesday morning. I was living in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, working at an ad agency in Akron on the morning of Sept.11. The television in the office was on, I could not believe what I was hearing, and as the live broadcast was going on, we all saw the 2nd plane hit the 2nd tower. It was numbing. Watching and listening to the news, hearing about the pentagon then, it was just awful.
That evening, as I parked my car at my house, it was eerie how it seemed everyone was at home, cars parked everywhere, people glued to their televisions. I remember seeing all of the images of people who were looking for their family. All of the flyers with missing person after missing person. It made me so sad, and made me want to see my family, I knew where they were. I drove to North Dakota to see my mom and dad, stayed for awhile, and then drove back to Ohio, stopped for one night, and drove on to Boston to see my sister. I just HAD to see them, I knew where they were, and so many were searching and searching with unanswered questions.
It’s hard to believe that it’s been 10 years since that awful tragedy. It still seems almost unbelievable.
I had just moved out to Fargo a couple weeks prior to start college at Minnesota State University Moorhead. I had a job at Kmart that, a couple days prior, I had injured a muscle behind my rib cage that hurt like I couldn’t even describe. I had fallen asleep with a wrap around my middle consisting of ice and a magnet pad, because I was young and stupid enough back then to think magnets would make things hurt less. I had slept in until about 10 or 11 when I stumbled out of bed and went to the Internet without turning on the TV. And there on the MSN homepage, in a very small corner of the page for some reason, was a picture of the first plane having hit the tower and the fiery wreckage it had left, with a heading that said Terrorist Attack on World Trade Center or something like that. And my initial inclination was, “Huh, that’s a weird thing for them to have on their front page, that obviously fake news story.” If only.
The rest of the day was mostly a blur. I watched a lot of the TV coverage and was amazed that every channel was covering it, even channels like MTV and Nickelodeon and Lifetime. I saw people jumping out of the Towers and that was when the real surreality of the day came to life, as I was watching peopl dying live on camera and there wasn’t anything anyone could do to help them. My Mom called at least a few times to see if I was alright. I assured her that Fargo was probably pretty far down on the terrorist hit list, although I admit to not being absolutely certain of that at the time. I also remember being angry, angry at levels I didn’t think I was capable of being, and the concern I had that there were millions more just like me, and what that would lead to.
March 11, 2009 was the day my daughter was born, seven and a half years after 9/11. So today is also the day my daughter turns 2.5 years old. I’m personally trying more to focus on that, because today may be an anniversary of the worst memory and some of the worst feeling that I’ve ever had, it’s also an anniversary of the best ones too.
You may have similar memories of 9/11, which you’re welcome to share in the comments if you so chose, but primarily all of us at KK BOLD just wish to pay our respects to the victims of that day and to their families. Our deepest sympathy and condolences to everyone affected by that terrible day that happened only ten years ago. We remember 9/11 today, and we all pray that somehow someday, that’s what that day could finally be reduced to – just a memory.