Today, on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, everyone at Holmes took a moment to reflect on their experiences when they first heard the news. Though we may have been in different places, we all have that day in common, not only with our coworkers, but with our country. We have everyone who was touched by that tragedy in our thoughts today.
Carisa – “I was 9 months pregnant (a week out from my due date). I was at home that morning as my doctor had asked me to work shortened hours due to swelling in my legs. I was watching the show “A Baby Story” on TLC when I flipped channels and saw the report of the first plane crash. I called my husband to tell him and he said they were hearing about it on the radio. There was such confusion at first that it was just a random terrible accident, then when the second tower was hit it was such disbelief that came over me. I can recall everyone in the office feeling so sad as we kept hearing about the additional attacks that were taking place. I became very grateful that I was able to be in a safe place that day but my heart went out to all those suffering. I’ll never forget that day and will forever admire all the heroes that took action to help others and save as many lives as they could.”
Kevin – “I was at my desk when I heard the news and I just remember stopping everything in disbelief. At that moment nothing else seemed to matter except for the thought of all the innocent people involved.”
Brian – “I was in my office, and saw it over the internet. I felt violated and disbelief.”
Karen – “I was working here at Holmes. I didn’t have any radio on or anything so I had no idea it had happened. When I was going out the back door to go to lunch, Kevin and another employee were outside looking up at a plane flying overhead and I thought it was kind of funny. I asked what they were looking at and they said it was one of the president’s (Air Force 1) planes. I said, ‘Oh, that’s neat.’ That’s when Kevin said, ‘Don’t tell me you haven’t heard what happened?’ It was a surreal feeling to know that that was one of the only planes in the air over a country like America. That day, I did a lot of thanking God that my family was safe, and praying for the ones who lost loved ones.”
Heather – “My husband at the time was a Police Officer and had a work pager that would text him the World News and Live Breaking Headlines. That morning we were both scheduled off work and were sleeping in…I remember that the pager was buzzing continually and fell off the dresser, which prompted me to get out of bed and pick it up. Usually I wouldn’t pay attention to the headlines, but because of the repetitive buzzing I looked at the headline which said “Plane Hits North Tower-NYC”. My initial thought was ‘Wow, what a weird place for a plane to crash,’ and I went and turned on the news in the living room. About 30 seconds after I turned on the TV, I watched as the second plane hit the World Trade Center and my stomach churned because I knew that the possibility of this being an accident had just diminished right before my eyes. For the next eight hours, I sat cross-legged inches from the TV–watching planes hit the Pentagon and crash in a PA field. I wept as I watched family members search for their loved ones and rescue workers battle through the smoke and rubble. For the first time in my life I felt a sense of fear not as ‘Heather’, but as an American–It is a feeling, and a day that I will never forget.
Holly – “A news flash came blaring across the radio in the shop office. I ran to the break room to the tiny TV. Someone was adjusting the rabbit ears to get a clear picture. As I stood there, I saw the second plane hit the towers. Slowly, I walked outside the open truck bay door to look up to the crystal blue sky to see, nothing. This was very unusual since we were in Wright Patterson Air Force Base flight pattern. The silence was defining.”
Stephanie – “I had the day off work, so I was sleeping in. My now husband called to tell be that a plane had just crashed into the towers. I remember sitting on the edge of our bed staring at the TV in disbelief as I watched the news. My friend called and asked if I could pick her two boys up from school. As I walked across the parking lot, the day seemed so very quite. It was odd to look up and not see a plane in the sky. When I picked the boys up I asked them if they knew why school was letting out early. The youngest one said that some bad men had flown a plane into a building and a lot of people were hurt. Breaks my heart to this day.”
Matthew – “It was the day before I started college so I was in my dorm room when someone came and knocked and woke my roommate and I up. We didn’t understand what they meant when they told us and only thought it had been a small personal plane. We got up and went down to the lounge and watched the coverage. It was hard to believe as we watched the second plane hit and then the towers collapse. You feel for the people who lost their lives in such a senseless act of cowardice and violence. You feel for the people who lost loved ones. And you have respect for the men and women of the fire and police departments, the emts and paramedics and anyone who did what they could to help that day, especially those who gave their lives trying to save others.”
Ben – “I was taking a postsecondary art class at Wittenberg during my senior year of high school. Everything happened while I was in class and I didn’t hear about it until I was on my way home and stopped to get an early lunch. The drive-through person asked ‘Isn’t this crazy?’ I asked ‘What is?’ He told me to turn on my radio and I drove home listening and then watched everything on TV. I don’t remember much more specifically about the rest of the day, just feeling touched by the enormous tragedy and the realization that my own personal life was such a small part of the larger world, and that the larger world had just been changed forever.”
Karleigh – “I was in art class, my senior year of high school. The TV in that room didn’t work so after the first plane hit, someone ran to our classroom doorway from another room and told us to go to the cafeteria. I stood there surrounded by students and teachers from other classes and vividly remember the gasps and looks of disbelief as we watched the second plane fly into the other tower. I can recall looking around the room and thinking that at that moment we were no longer teachers and students. We were all just people feeling the exact same way at the exact same time. The rest of the school day was a blur, but I remember getting home and sitting silently with my family in front of the TV, desperate for answers as we learned about the other attacks that day and feared what was coming next. I’m still sad for everyone who suffered a loss that day, but also grateful for those who have risked everything to protect us and continue to keep us safe.”