Accounts from Five People
I had worked the night shift and was asleep when it happened.
I found out around 3 PM when I phoned my aunt who told me. I cried.
The one story that really got me was one lady with long blond
hair who had a baby on the way and her husband was a firefighter.
He had gone in to save someone else when the building collapsed.
Brandi Cook, age 20
I was driving back from Winchester, VA. I always listen to FM,
but on September 11, I listened to AM. At first when I heard the
broadcast about the attacks, I thought I was listening to a radio
play (since it was AM). Then Dan Rather started speaking about
the World trade Center being destroyed and I thought, "Oh My God!
This is real!" Tears came to my eyes as I listened to the attacks
both in New York and Washington. I couldn't get home quickly enough.
I sat glued in front of the TV watching the broadcast over and
over and trying to make it sink in that this had happened to us.
Norma Clark, age 50
I was driving to my brother-in-law's place on River Road. I heard
the news that there was a plane crash in New York. They were saying
the plane crashed into the World Trade Center. But I didn't think
much more about it.
I worked on my brother-in-law's place for about four hours. There
was no electricity there. Then I heard on the radio as I was going
back home about everything that had happened.
Dan Rotruck, age 47
I was at home watching TV when it interrupted the program to
say a plane had hit the twin towers. For a second I thought it
was an accident- until the second plane hit. I turned the videotape
on to show my husband when he came home and saw the second plane
hit. It was awful. I felt heavy in my chest thinking of all the
people in that building and their families. Then they announced
the Pentagon--then the plane in Pennsylvania. They thought it
had been heading to do damage.
When it all became clear I had a whole lot of anger mixed with
that sadness. I cried when I saw it and when I tried to explain
to my kids and then for a long time afterward whenever I thought
about it. I cried for the survivors, the victims, their families,
all of it.
Vanessa Whetzel, age 40
On 9/11, I was on my way to Dulles airport to board a plane for
Minneapolis. where a national conference of deaf senior citizens
was to be held. Upon arriving at the airport, I was informed that
no planes were flying that day. When I got back home, received
many phone calls from others checking to see if I was on a plane