It left me breathless

Date Submitted: 09/11/2009
Author Info: Danielle (Chesapeake Beach, MD - USA) 
Occupation: Administrative
Lived in NY on 9.11.01?: No
Knew someone who perished?: Yes

I was a Freshman in High School when the attacks happened. I was on my way to my 4th period biology class when I heard the first whispers. A friend came in and said “They bombed the capital!” This was right after the Pentagon had been hit, but we didn’t know that until later. After some convincing, our teacher allowed us to turn on the news. When I saw those first pictures, my heart sank. I just sat with my mouth open, watching the horror unfold. My Dad is a steamfitter, and at the time, he was supposed to go back to work after being injured. He was assigned to the Pentagon. I saw an image of the Pentagon on fire flash across the screen, and I could not breathe. My heart stopped, and tears welled in my eyes. Our principal came on the PA system and told the students to remain in class, the phone lines were jammed and no one could make any calls. I was panicing for the next few hours as I saw the towers and the Pentagon walls collapse. I was finally pulled out of class by my mother for my scheduled doctor’s appointment. I was relieved to find out my Dad was still at home, recovering from his previous injury. My dcotor wasn’t in because she had to go fill in at the hospital while the ER docs went to go fill in at the other DC hospitals. That day changed my life. I hugged my dad for hours after I got home, so appreciative of the time I now have with him that I thought was cut short. Unfortunately, a recent graduate from my high school, Edmond Young, was killed in the Pentagon that day. So young, with such a successful life ahead of him, and it was taken away in an instant. Pictures of him still hang in the halls of our school. I now have an emergency plan in place to meet with my husband and family if something like this happens again. As tragic as these events were, it gave me a new appreciation of my country, and my freedoms. They can all be taken away so easily, and for such stupid reasons as hate. I now have my own stories to tell my chlildren about the day the US was attacked, just as my parents told me about the day JFK was assassinated, and my grabdparents told me about Pearl Harbor. I remember what I was wearing, the faces of the people I was around, and the ache in my soul as I watched those helpless but heroic people gives their lives for our country. I have many friends out there fighting this war to make sure something like this will never happen again, and words can not describe how proud of them I am. I will always remember that day, and carry its lessons with me forever. God Blass America.


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