September 11 Digital Archive






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LC Story: Story

I was at work. It was a beautiful, sunny autumn day in the mid-West. I work in a large Medical Center and work from 9:00 to 5:30. I always come to work about 8:30 a.m. (Central time) to have breakfast in the cafeteria. I remember sitting there, looking outside and thinking how good it was to be alive on such a beautiful day. Then, for no reason, I felt terribly sad. I looked at the clock and it was about 8:45. I thought, how strange -- but it was time to go to my office and I shook off the feeling. As I rode up in the elevators, I heard people talking about the "accident" in New York. As I entered my office, I quickly learned about what was going on. I'll always wonder if that moment of sadness was the collective grief of a nation as it started to mourn its dead.

LC Story: Memory

So many -- it's hard to pin them all down. Listening in disbelief to the radio. Being very busy and being torn between doing my work or being where the radios were. I was born the month after Pearl Harbor and have grown up with stories of World War II. One of my first thoughts was that this was much bigger than that had been. And then I thought of the day Kennedy was was shot and our horror and disbelief that day. I called my mother and various members of my family, just to reassure myself that they were okay. I called my daughter in Atlanta, wishing we were closer and worrying about being so far from her. Trying to decide what the facts were versus rumors that were going around was hard. Working in Omaha and hearing that President Bush had just landed at Offutt AFB. I think not really knowing the what/who/why of what was going on and what else might be going to happen contributed to the feeling of unreality of that day.

LC Story: Affects

We have more restrictions now. Flying is more time consuming. It's harder to visit the Statue of Liberty and other places of historical significance. I think this was a wake-up call to government agencies and they are trying to keep us safe, but keeping our nation safe is almost impossible with cities that have millions of people and little towns with less than 100! We have urban areas, farming areas, mountains, deserts. Our people are diverse and of many ethnic origins. Our elders saw us through World War II and Korea, my generation saw us through Vietnam and the Gulf War, and our young generation is being asked to face the greatest challenge of all. To somehow protect the world, not just our nation, from terrorism that can strike anyplace at any time. I grieve for the loss of life that happened 9/11 but I grieve more for the young people who will lose their lives to keep us safe. And I hope that the world their children will inherit will be a safer, more peaceful world where something like this will never happen again.


“lc_story271.xml,” September 11 Digital Archive, accessed September 27, 2020,