1st period. Right after, my class would go to Biology. I did alright in Biology. But that’s not the point. I wasn’t in Bio yet.
At 7:46 a.m., Central Standard Time, on September 11th, 2001, I was arriving at school.
At 8:03 a.m., I was in Home Room.
My teacher had been called out of the room. We really only became concerned when we noticed she had been out of the room for a pretty long period of time.
When she came back, she was very emotional. She was an emotional person anyway. It didn’t take much for her to get misty eyed. But this was different.
She explained that two planes had flown into the World Trade Center in New York City, and we were about to have a school-wide assembly about it.
On the way to the assembly, somebody explained that these weren’t little private planes that had crashed by accident. These were passenger planes.
That’s the moment the truth started to sink in.
The assembly answered our questions. Yes, it was an attack. Yes, there were a lot of casualties. No, we didn’t know why it happened.
Being a Christian school, we were able to all say a word of prayer. We needed to pray, as none of us really understood what was happening.
I’m thankful for that.
Within an hour, I was in a car listening to the radio. By this point, the towers were starting to fall. The people on the radio had nothing to say. Neither did I. I could only imagine those iconic Twin Towers in my head, and the fact that they wouldn’t be there any more.
That was the moment the truth started to sit heavy.
Within thirty minutes, I was home. The television was on, but the images didn’t make sense. They were replaying footage of the collisions.There was one tower still standing. Burning. Everyone knew it was a matter of time before it came down. But that doesn’t mean anyone was prepared for when it actually did.
That was the moment the truth finally hit.
In the ten years since, I’ve finished high school. I’ve finished college. I’ve had good times. I’ve had the worst times of my life.
And I’ve had friends, teachers, and relatives serve in Iraq and Afghanistan.
My best friend on that day ten years ago served twice. When he first got back, he slept with a gun by his bed. It had become normal.
On September 11, 2001, at 8:46 a.m. Eastern Time, I was arriving at school. When it was 9:03 a.m. in New York City, I was in Home Room.
Where were you?