Do you remember where you were when the 9/11 tragedy happened? So many will never forget and for many the flames are long gone but the pain lingers on. All those tear-stained eyes that still grieve over what happened 10 years ago will never be the same again. No one could ever explain that horrible moment in time when New York City’s skyline would forever be changed. A simple act of terrorism brought America to its knees. The morning of Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2001 was clear and sunny, a beautiful crisp day where New Yorkers got out of bed to another work day. Already, the plot against us had begun, yet we were oblivious to what was to come. Imagine walking down one of Manhattan’s hectic streets downtown where the World Trade Center once stood, looking up at the apparent blue sky that lied past the 110-story twin towers. For a moment you see how gorgeous the creation man had made standing before you and in the distance you hear a plane flying closer than usual. You think for a moment, “They must be off course.” When the fuel-filled aircraft crashes and explodes like a bomb and intense fire alarmingly spreads around the top of the north tower, you’re in disbelief for a minute thinking that must have been an accident. When you see a second airplane flying low and demolish into the south tower, you tell yourself “My God, we are at war.”
It was tragic to have been there and witness the worst act of terrorism in American history. Tens of thousands of people worked in the Twin Towers. How could anyone deliberately hijack a plane with innocent lives already aboard and purposely fly it into a building? The pain and fright stretched far out into our country and beyond when what happened had come to the nations attention. For someone to become a terrorist and accept this horrible suicide mission had to have the absence of love for themselves and others. Some would say that is the definition of evil. Four planes total were hijacked that day. United Airlines Flight 175 departed Boston a 7:58 a.m. and crashes into the south tower. The aircraft was carrying 56 passengers and nine crew members and was set to fly to Los Angeles. American Airline Flight 11 departed Boston at 7:59 a.m. also bound for Los Angeles. Aboard were 81 passengers and 11 crew members and it crashed into the north tower. United Airline Flight 93, headed for San Francisco, left Newark at 8:01 a.m. The plane that was carrying 38 passengers, two pilots and five flight attendants, and it crashed near Pittsburgh at 10 a.m. American Airline Flight 77 left Washington at 8:10 a.m. on its way to Los Angeles. With 58 passengers, two pilots and four flight attendants, and it smashed into the pentagon.
During the time in crisis, President George Bush faced the test of his lifetime. At the time this horrible act had occurred, President Bush was in Florida in a classroom full of children. When he was told of the nation was under attack, he must have been devastated. What do you do in a situation like that? The secret service insisted that George W. Bush leave immediately and be away from the chaos of New York and Washington. In the president’s first address to the nation after the attack, President Bush said, “Terrorism against our nation will not stand.” Flight 93, the plane that wrecked outside of Pittsburgh never made it to where the terrorist had aimed for it to go. There were heroes on board that day, taking over the terrorists that hijacked the plane. There were those who would not let these terrorist take over the plane without a fight. They saved thousands of lives that may have been taken if no one stepped in and took the terrorist down. Even though they knew they would still die, they never backed down.
America did stand tall in the aftermath of the attack. It brought out the hero in many people. Firefighters and police officers worked overtime, civilians rushed to those who were suffering. Firefighters and police officers don’t always get the credit they deserve. They truly are America’s heroes putting they’re lives on the line for us. It brings such a glow to our chest to know they are out there unselfishly making the world a better place. It really was a rude awakening to believe that such a thing could ever happen to us. It did bring the human spirit alive. Many memorials were brought to light in the wake of their loved ones who had needlessly died in the 9/11 attack. It showed that in the event of an evil act the human spirit must not be underestimated. The date of September 11, 2001 will forever be remembered in generations to come. Along with the remembrance, those who died and those who came to the rescue will forever live in our hearts. It wasn’t only a day of enormous pain, fear, and shock, but it was a time when we all learned what true hero’s were really about.
Jason Scott Czyz