Where were you when the Twin Towers were hit on September 11, 2001?
It was the fall of my senior year of high school. That day in 2001 began like any other in my small Kansas town. I woke up, got ready, and went to school. That’s when I learned what had happened.
News takes a little longer to reach the small towns nestled in America’s heartland. This, along with the difference in time zones, meant that the North Tower had been hit before I got to school and the South Tower was hit just as I was arriving. Some of the teachers were already watching the news broadcasts. They allowed us to watch with them as news of the third plane crashing into the Pentagon flashed across the screen.
It was a strange day. Although they didn’t send us home, they didn’t seem to expect much of us, or the teachers, either. Most of each class period was spent watching news broadcasts as they live reported on the rescue efforts, interviewed survivors, and showed continually emerging footage of the planes as they’d barreled into the buildings of that city which was oh so far away from us.
Questions flooded my mind. What did this mean for us as a nation? What did it mean for our future?
In spite of, or perhaps because of, the tragedy of that day, one thing was clear. On that day, in that moment, The United States of America was indeed a united nation. Policemen, firefights, and paramedics worked tirelessly at the scene to help anyone they could regardless of race or political affiliation. Strangers reached out to help strangers. People set aside a focus on their own well-being and gave their lives to save others.
At that moment, our nation, our freedom, our way of life was attacked, and we stood together in support of every endeavor to protect it. Do we still stand together today?
Where were you on that day? How were you impacted? I’d love to hear your stories.
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