By Ryan Hassell
Next year will be the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, so I decided to ask some of my relatives* where they were during them and what it was like afterwards.
Where were you on 9/11/2001?
Mom: “I was at work at SAP America, Newtown Square. We had break rooms and there were TVs [in the break rooms]. They turned all the TVs throughout the building to the news. My good friend’s husband was in New York to get his masters’ through a co-op, and she was freaking out. That night I was supposed to have a party with friends from work. I had all of this food at home but no one came except my friend Marie, the one whose husband was in New York.”
Dad: “I was at work. I was in the middle of getting a phone call and as soon as the call came, the person next to me showed me one of the towers on fire. As we were watching, the second tower was hit. I then saw people jumping from the buildings. It was the worst thing I’ve ever seen in my entire life. I didn’t see the pentagon.”
Grandma: “I was on the blue route driving home, and I had heard it on the radio. I was completely shocked and I couldn’t believe it until I got home. When I got home, I saw the second building collapse. I also saw the Pentagon get hit.”
What do you remember most about the days following the event?
Mom: “It was shocking that something like this happened because nothing like it had ever happened in my lifetime, it was mostly fear of something else happening and terrible sadness with the news covering all of the victim’s stories; it was horrible.”
Dad: “The one thing I remember most about the days following was the news coverage. I was sad and scared. Nobody wanted to fly anywhere.”
Grandma: “Everybody was in shock, everybody was helping everybody, no animosity. Everyone got together and got behind New York and the Pentagon. Everyone was kind to each other.”
*Relatives do not wish to be named or pictured