September 11 Digital Archive: XML Document
Story:I was driving to work in the Chicago suburbs. I remember it was a pretty and clear morning, and the big discussion on the radio was about whether or not Michael Jordan would come out of retirement. Then the news reporter started talking about an aircraft hitting the World Trade Center. I figured it was a small personal aircraft that flew too close or something, but as reports came it it became clear that it was a full sized jet airliner. Before I got to work the second plane had hit, and it was clear that it was deliberate.
Immediatelly I felt the need to tell someone, but my wife was at the dentist. So I called my mother in law in Las Vegas, woke her up, and had her turn on CNN and describe what was going on.
Nothing much got done at work that day. Because the internet was bogged down with traffic I turned on the radio I use to listen to Cubs games and became the "news center" for our department. We used my dry erase board to keep track of what was happening, and to list rumors as they came up and were either verified or proved false.
In the afternoon my manager started handing out little jobs for people to do to start getting our minds off of the tragedy. That evening my father in law called from his vacation in British Columbia to simply say hello. He was out of range of radio and TV and had no idea what was going on.
Memory:The shock of what was happening. Also, the feeling of helplessness as reports kept coming in of the Pentagon being hit, and then the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania.
Affects:September 11th pulled this country into two years of war. We probably would have ended up fighting these battles anyway, but this was the catalyst that got us moving.
Personally, I have a greater appreciation for what a great country we live in, and for the sacrifices that have been made to make it that way.