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Author Topic: Sixteen years ago...  (Read 482 times)
Chris
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« on: September 11, 2017, 05:22:52 AM »

...was just another day for me.  A Tuesday.  Nice day.  Sun was shining.  Wife had dropped our oldest at day care on her way to work.  She was pregnant, but we didn't know yet.  I had a morning hearing at court.  I was a prosecutor then.  On the way back, someone said a plane had hit one of the towers at the World Trade Center.  In my mind, I was imagining a small tour plane, or maybe a plane pulling a banner.  Got back to the office, tried to get online and see what I could.  Couldn't get on CNN or any major network pages.  I had just gotten on and had video streaming from MSNBC when the second plane hit.  We got a television hooked up to cable, in the basement of the county admin building.  100+ people crowded around watching.  The sobs when we saw the towers fall.  I remember another prosecutor came in, saw the cloud of smoke and ash on the screen and asked me what happened.  I remember just saying "it's gone."   The rest of the day is kind of a blur, inter spaced with images as clear to me as if I was looking right now...

To those who fell that day, and those who fell in the resulting later actions, be thou at peace...
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230RN
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« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2017, 05:47:11 AM »

Having a flexible schedule, I was running a little late that morning, but just getting ready to leave, putting my coat on.  I had the TV on with the sound off, waiting for the traffic reports.  Thought the burning building was an advertisement for another "disaster movie."

Realized that was one heck of a long promo for a movie, turned the sound up and discovered it was real.

Sat down to watch, called the office to say I was going to be really late, could not connect to the office secretary --or anyone.  (Turned out they were all in the conference room watching the TV reports.)

My thinking throughout all this was, "We're all soldiers now."
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makattak
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« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2017, 05:49:15 AM »

I was working at a part time job while going to school, just outside of DC.

Working away, completely unaware until the people working next door popped their head in and said "They just hit the Pentagon."

Looked to find a radio and listened as things continued to unfold. Being in DC area, I had to reassure some family that the Pentagon was nowhere near where I was.

I will, today, honor the victims, but I will remember with special honor the citizens who rose up to stop yet another attack that day. Flight 93, you were the first line of defense. Thank you for your sacrifice.
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« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2017, 05:55:37 AM »

Flight 93, you were the first line of defense. Thank you for your sacrifice.

Okay.  Let's roll.
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Unisaw
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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2017, 06:03:35 AM »

I was in a meeting about 1-1/2 miles from ground zero in NYC.  I'll never forget that day and the next, when I was able to catch a train home to my family in Virginia.
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Chris
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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2017, 06:06:25 AM »


I will, today, honor the victims, but I will remember with special honor the citizens who rose up to stop yet another attack that day. Flight 93, you were the first line of defense. Thank you for your sacrifice.


There were so many heroes that day... Flight 93.  The guy in the red bandanna...

http://www.espn.com/video/clip?id=11505494

My son saw this video.  He now wears or carries a red bandanna at every sporting event he participates in.

Edited:  I hadn't watched that video in a while, meaning a couple of years.  So, I watched it again.  And I'm sitting here at my desk crying because of this young man, and thinking of my son, a high school senior, who wants to go off and become a Naval Officer...
« Last Edit: September 11, 2017, 06:48:22 AM by Chris » Logged

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Amy Schumer
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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2017, 06:39:21 AM »

Okay.  Let's roll.

Wheaton College here is home to the Todd M. Beamer Center, which encompasses Anderson Commons, Coray Alumni Gym and the Student Center.   He went to Undergrad here.
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« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2017, 07:09:57 AM »

Ari Fleischer recalls the chain of events (he does this every year):

https://twitchy.com/dougp-3137/2017/09/11/fascinating-stuff-ari-fleischers-tweets-about-morning-of-september11th-with-president-bush-are-riveting/


I still clearly remember I had just finished up ASTC school at Lemoore NAS a couple of days before and had taken a week of leave to dive in Hawaii. My girlfriend at the time, who lived in DC, called me and told me to turn on the TV. It was surreal to me that this was happening while I was basically in paradise, and "stranded" there because air traffic was shut down. That last part was also surreal, because you don't realize how many aircraft are flying around the Hawaiian islands until the weird quiet of none flying. It was several days of just an eerie feeling.
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« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2017, 07:45:55 AM »

I was in high school, standing at my locker, shuffling books between classes.  A good friend, who I later roomed with in college, came up to me and said, "Have you heard?  We've been attacked."

Being of that age, at the time, it was very surreal.  It seemed very unpredictable what would happen next.  Were there more attacks coming?  Would it usher in a war?  Was there a chance I would be conscripted?
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« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2017, 07:50:04 AM »

Ari Fleischer recalls the chain of events (he does this every year):

https://twitchy.com/dougp-3137/2017/09/11/fascinating-stuff-ari-fleischers-tweets-about-morning-of-september11th-with-president-bush-are-riveting/


I still clearly remember I had just finished up ASTC school at Lemoore NAS a couple of days before and had taken a week of leave to dive in Hawaii. My girlfriend at the time, who lived in DC, called me and told me to turn on the TV. It was surreal to me that this was happening while I was basically in paradise, and "stranded" there because air traffic was shut down. That last part was also surreal, because you don't realize how many aircraft are flying around the Hawaiian islands until the weird quiet of none flying. It was several days of just an eerie feeling.

That's what still sticks with me 16 years later. Stepping outside of the office, it was a bright sunny day in Milwaukee too.  It was eerily quiet. You had no idea how often you're hearing a jet in the background and a contrail in your peripheral vision somewhere in the sky until they were all gone.
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« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2017, 08:38:31 AM »

My mom called me from work, and told me I should turn on the TV, and see what was going on (I was living with my parents at the time). Aside from the really horrible news that happened to people I didn't know, in places I had never been, and didn't know about, it was a normal workday for me. One of the guys working next to me was a Bosniac Muslim. I don't recall anyone treating him any differently, aside from some curiosity.
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« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2017, 10:22:59 AM »

I was getting the kids ready for school and we had the local news on.  It was still dark in the Seattle area at that time of the morning. All three of us were eating breakfast when the breaking news came through on the first crash.  I originally thought it was something similar to the B-25 crashing into the Empire State and told the kids that.  We were watching live when the second aircraft flew into the South Tower, and I told the kids that we were under attack.  I kept the kids home from school and I stayed home from the office to watch the news and discuss the events.

My wife and I were discussing this morning that her fourth-grade class were all born considerably after 9/11, and to them, it is probably as much ancient history as WW II would be to us.
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« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2017, 03:33:52 PM »

I was in the situation room, rehearsing our "stories" about the plane pieces we'd claim to have pulled out of the pentagon, after the missile came in. After it happened and we successfully spread the narrative, I took my payoff from the illuminati and left to my private island that the payoff bought me.
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« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2017, 03:36:15 PM »

I was in the communications center for an airbase in Germany.

I pulled out the threatcon and recall books and told my fellow airman "get ready for delta and calling everybody in"

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« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2017, 03:55:20 PM »

I was at work, watching it unfold on the web. When the first one fell, I told the boss I was going home. I didn't ask, didn't talk about it, I said "I'm going home" and left. I watched the rest from home on the news with tears streaming down my face...
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« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2017, 04:50:28 PM »

I had a radio in the bathroom and usually turned on the news just before stepping into the shower.  Initially it sounded like someone got lost in a private plane and found one of the World Trade Center towers the hard way.
Once I got out of the shower and more or less dressed, I turned on the TV to Fox News and found out what had actually happened.
Going into work was kind of surreal.  I was working for a Japanese semiconductor equipment company at the time, in their Hillsboro, Oregon office.
We didn't get a lot of work done that day.  We jerry rigged an antenna to a TV in one of the conference rooms and watched a lot of news.
Jets flying out of PDX frequently routed over our area, and when everything was grounded it was really quiet as others have noted.  Some of us took frequent walks in the park around our business campus, and it was so odd not to hear jets overhead, or see any contrails in the sky.
We had folks in Japan on business, and of course they were stranded there for a while.
F-15 Eagles would fly combat patrols out of the airbase at PDX during that time, and you could sure tell when a flight of those were in the area.
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« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2017, 04:51:32 PM »

I was off work that day, I had bashed hell out of my right leg over the weekend and the Dr. wanted me to lay off for a week.
I had gotten up at the normal time to see the wife and son off to work and school and was watching one of the news channels when it went down.
I was watching live when the 2nd plane hit. I was watching live when the towers came down.
I still get pissed off when ever I encounter some fucktarded 9/11 truther, particularly the 20-something types that were still using sippy cups when it happened.

Called my wife at work and gave her instructions on being extra vigilant. My parents were in town and I went to visit them for awhile, they had seen it.

Mostly I remember being pissed off. I also remember seeing one of the news stations showing scenes of reportedly "Muslims" celebrating about it. Those were of course debunked later.
The following Thursday I went and visited a Navy recruiter. Pretty futile but for some reason I felt a need. I was right at the cut-off age for prior service and I was (and still am) out of shape (fat bastard).

 
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« Reply #17 on: September 11, 2017, 05:00:14 PM »

I was on a road trip, so I watched it all unfold on a tiny TV in a tiny motel room in Tehachapi.

My folks had flown to the East Coast on vacation and got stuck there when air traffic was grounded.  When they finally got a flight home, it was on a 757, same type as two of the four hijacked airliners, which made my dad a little nervous, thinking that there might be additional sleeper cells that had been trained for that aircraft.
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« Reply #18 on: September 11, 2017, 05:33:12 PM »

NAS Norfolk, another day of routine scheduled maintenance at my H3 squadron. My shop had 3-4 birds in various states of undress, working corrosion and calendar/hourly inspections. Grainy old TV in our first class mess, we started popping in to look at the first hit, unsure of WTF. When the second hit happened we needed no clues to figure out what it was and pretty much knew it was Islamic long before the news got there. Rest of the day was a blur. Hello that were going to be apart for a week were back together in a few hours. We did things that in retrospect seem silly. We inspected every aircraft for anything suspicious. We inspected the hangar, twice. We even climbed the ladder and walked the roof. That was where the new normal sank in for me. It was a beautiful bluebird day up there and not a plane in the sky with two large airports, four military airfields and who knows what else.

 Our helps were second back in the air that day to do our executive transport mission to and from DC. Biggest holdup was figuring out the mode 4 IFF crypto so the birds remained in the sky. One of my guys was a leftover F-14 tweak so he was the only one there that could do that, so much for operations officer's I guess. We were overflying and landing at the Pentagon that day. I wish I had some of the aircrew pictures that they showed us.

Left work as normal, another shift coming in. Still angry, tense, we had no idea what was next, I figured that my city was next on the target list, if you are a jihadi and can get a nuke you might ought to blow it up where half the world's carriers are going to come from to give you a stone age upgrade. In fact, I lived one block from the shipyard where a lot of nuke materials are. I certainly upgraded my personal defcon.

Sep 12 was five hours of traffic to get to base and I never did, ditched car at a buddy's and humped four miles to base with enough stuff to meet the expectation of not being allowed to go home for a good long while.

I am still no less viciously angry, maybe moreso at the deniers, apologists, and appeasers. I put up a new flag yesterday, when I half staffed it I tried to explain why to my child, she knows nothing about 9/11, this is the world as it has always been to her.

Beyond the initial days after my military life kinda sat out the war and that bothers me. A few years later we delivered a MEU to continue things in Iraq and a little AFG support, but then we sailed around chasing pirates. When I went reserves again peripherally my unit helped by training airwings going over there. If I had known how I would feel now when I was 19 I would have found a life as a trigger puller. The sidelines suck.

One semi related thing, in 2002 my same helo crew took a two bird det onto LHD-7 to ride in for fleetweek. It was the first party in the city since the day. We were treated like royalty, but to see the sites it was clear how raw the wound still was. I was by myself in uniform and walked up to the backside of the ground zero site. Some foreman gave me a ride down into the hole, I have some photos of in there. The whole time we were in town we had unrestricted air clearance, in fact getting the Pentagon called on us for overflying ground zero while ferrying reporters to the ship. On the way out of town we flew a lap of Manhattan, took a ton of pics. One day I get a real computer and show y'all some.
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« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2017, 06:27:43 PM »

Not to take away from 9/11 itself, we should also remember that today marks the anniversary of the Benghazi attacks as well.
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« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2017, 09:38:23 PM »

Not to take away from 9/11 itself, we should also remember that today marks the anniversary of the Benghazi attacks as well.

You really shouldn't use the 9/11 remembrance to praise Mrs. Clinton's foreign policy achievements. She lost. Get over it.
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When MLK used the techniques he learned from Gandhi - was that cultural appropriation?

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--Martin Luther, On Christian Liberty
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« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2017, 11:29:37 PM »

At work that morning.   My boss and the Production Manager had flown to Denver that morning as we were in the process of mergering with/buying a complimentary company.

Sitting in my office with one of my supervisors, Jim, an older gentlemen, and a helluva guy, when  one of my inventory clerks sticks his head in and says "A plane just hit the World Trade Center.  I said, "Some sighting idiot in Piper Cub got lost in the clouds".  

Jim, said "B-25 into the Empire State Building".

I smiled at him and said "Nobody's flying B-25 over New York these days."

So we ambled into the Conference room and fired up the TV.   First thing we saw was that nasty black gash billowing smoke.

"That wasn't no damn Piper Cub." I said half under my breath.   We stood there trying to make sense of what and how this had happened.  "There's no clouds or anything."  I later learned the ATC's called that "Severe Clear".  

And then the second plane flew into the other tower.


"We're are war."  I hadn't noticed, but a bunch of folks had filtered into the room, riveted to the screen.  There were lots of gasps of horror as the fireball erupted from the other side of the South Tower.  Jim looked at me and said "That was a passenger jet, Dale and Jason are on a passenger jet."  Oh, *expletive deleted*it.

I thought of Tom Clancy and his book about the crazy Japanese 747 pilot.  *expletive deleted*it, Tom.  Did you have to give those Muslim bastard this idea. But I didn't have too much time to muse over that as suddenly, I was in complete charge.  Not just the "Hey, keep things running but if you need me I'm a phone call away" charge.  But "Hey sir, the commander is dead, you're now it." charge.  Worse, because I was the only one in the company with military experience, my admin assistant, comes in and "It's the company president on the phone for you."

"Hi Boss, We should expect more attacks, they have caught us by surprise and have us on our heels , if they are smart, they'll keep going for as long as they can, until we can catch up or they run out of targets."

"Yes, the Sears Tower and Hancock Building would be on my target list if I was them."

"No, we don't need to evacuate the company HQ (in a old warehouse along the Chicago River in what's known at River North. Right across the street from Cabrini Green), I highly doubt we're a target. You are far enough away any target of value, that all evac'ing will do is clog roads."  (They shut down and sent every one home, because...Panic.)  rolleyes rolleyes rolleyes

"No, I have not heard from Dale or Jason.  Yes, we have called and let them voicemails.  I have no idea if they were on one of the planes that flew into the World Trade Center.  I certainly hope and pray that they weren't."

And more along those lines.  I just remember being angry.  Angry at what had happened (And I knew right away who had done it, also.)  Angry that the company president was a lost as a babe in the woods, and not knowing, sounding on the verge of panic when I was on the phone with him.  Just lost and scared.  ANd i was like "Sir, you need to pull it together."  Yes, they had the element of surprise, we had taken it on the chin, Pearl Harbor all over again,l and just waiting for the next attacks, know they were coming, but not knowing where or when.

And more came.  The one that hit the Pentagon, I believe was intended for the White House.  Then the saga of flight 93.  The news was telling us that unarmed F-16's were on their way to intercept.   One of the production clerks asked "How are they going shoot them down if they are unarmed?"  I said, "They're not, they are going to ram them."  I watched her eyes go wide and all the blood drain from her face.  "If they mission is to down the aircraft, you take down the aircraft, by any means necessary."

A guy that I had worked with at Airborne Express called me "Do have Rich's phone #?"  All three of us had worked at Airborne, I had left to go do logistics at OCP, Rich had left to go work for United in their aircraft movement control and positioning.   "Paul, I would be he's kinda up to his ass in alligators.  Now would not be a good time to bother him."

I went outside to have a cigarette.   Work continued inside, but a a very subdued pace.  I looked up to see aircraft lined up as far as a I could see going into both Midway and O'Hare, nothing headed out. Later that day came the eerie silence from a lack of jet noise.  And since we were halfway between ORD and MDW, it was very, very quiet and un-nerving.

I did talk to Rich a few days later...Trying to get in touch with each plane (the airlines have some kinds of HQ direct to planes commo system), trying to see who the missing planes were, and if anyone else was hijacked.   Then trying to find airports with runways capable of taking the aircraft, and ramp space.  Along with getting fuel status from planes and literally drawing range circles on maps and calling airports.  Quite a few calls were "We're sending plane X to land at your airport."  He said that was the easy part.  Getting them back up and to the correct positions/airports once things resumed were gong to be the really hard part.

Dale and Jason landed at the new Denver Airport, rented a car, called home, then us, and drove from Denver straight back Chicago.  Merger stuff could wait.

But before they got back.  I called an all hands meeting.  Let everyone know that Dale and Jason were safe and driving back.  It appeared that the Muslim terrorist had done all they could, and that we were now on alert and watching for any further attacks.  We were safe, the old Western Electric Hawthrone Works Cable Plant was probably not on their target list now or in the future. And I was surprised that hijacking 4 airliners was all they had.  

Then I looked around the room and said, "The last time we went up against someone who was willing to fly planes into their targets, we had to drop two atomic bombs them to get them to stop."  

16 years (actually far, far, far longer than that) and they still haven't stopped.
« Last Edit: September 12, 2017, 07:10:12 AM by Amy Schumer » Logged

Some days even my lucky rocketship underpants won't help.


Bring me my Broadsword and a clear understanding.
Get up to the roundhouse on the cliff-top standing.
Take women and children and bed them down.
Bless with a hard heart those that stand with me.
Bless the women and children who firm our hands.
Put our backs to the north wind.
Hold fast by the river.
Sweet memories to drive us on for the motherland.
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« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2017, 12:04:28 AM »

Buddy of mine in the guard was a FAA liaison for American Airlines when that happened.  The stories he tells of that day will take your breath away.
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I spent a week in that town one night....


« Reply #23 on: September 12, 2017, 07:17:38 AM »

Buddy of mine in the guard was a FAA liaison for American Airlines when that happened.  The stories he tells of that day will take your breath away.

Rich refers to it as barely controlled panic.  Trying to figure out what was going on, and who if any others had been hijacked.   A couple days later, I told everyone.  "There will never be another hijacking.  It used to be that if hijacked, they either flew to Cuba or if you were in Europe, you bounced around the Mid-East until the Germans or Israeli's got tired of your *expletive deleted*it.  Now the passengers know they have nothing to lose and will fight back tooth and nail, because they know they are going to die anyway."
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Some days even my lucky rocketship underpants won't help.


Bring me my Broadsword and a clear understanding.
Get up to the roundhouse on the cliff-top standing.
Take women and children and bed them down.
Bless with a hard heart those that stand with me.
Bless the women and children who firm our hands.
Put our backs to the north wind.
Hold fast by the river.
Sweet memories to drive us on for the motherland.
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« Reply #24 on: September 12, 2017, 07:31:06 AM »

At work that morning.   My boss and the Production Manager had flown to Denver that morning as we were in the process of mergering with/buying a complimentary company.
...
16 years (actually far, far, far longer than that) and they still haven't stopped.

Damn, that was intense. I felt like I was there with you. Good writing and good work!
Logged

"If what I post can be taken sarcastically, go with that as it is probably how it was meant."

Speedy: LOCAL League Sec/Treas/CIO
AKA: Hero Hog, Dr. Speed and "That fat, old, balding, Grey-bearded gimpy guy"
NRA Life Member, LSA, USN-DAV

"Stay safe..." - Paul "Skidmark" Henick, RIP
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