Monday, September 11, 2006

Where were you when the world stopped turning?

It's been five years today since the landscape of America, and the world, was changed by two American Airlines planes smashing into the World Trade Center towers.

So much has happened to all of us since then. When the world stopped turning that day, I was at home getting ready for work. I never watched the news in the morning because I was a reporter and I was bombarded with news all day so I didn't bother with it before going to work.

When I got to work, the receptionist told me that the towers had been hit by planes crashing into them. I was shocked. I tried to get the news up on the internet, but it was obvious the whole world was doing the same because the pages would not load. Too much traffic.

Because we were a twice-weekly newspaper, we purchased the every other day subscription to the Associated Press news feed. That day, the AP suspended subscription requirements and we got 24-hour news feed. We watched the computer with curiosity and awe for the next feed. They came roughly every five minutes or so, sometimes a paragraph and sometimes just a couple of lines. We got the television from downstairs and brought it upstairs so everyone could watch. We placed it in the lobby and watched in quiet reverance as the television news showed the towers being hit and crumbling to the ground.

One of our subscribers had a relative in New York who was taking pictures of the towers as things were happening. The photographer e-mailed us the pictures allowing us an on the frontlines view of the tragedy.

Where were you when the world stopped turning? 9/11 has become our generation's JFK assassination. No one in that generation ever forgets where they were and what they were doing when they heard about it. Now...we will never more ways than one.

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