On the Scene: Where were you and what were you doing on Sept. 11, 2001?

September 11, 2010 marks nine years since terrorist attacks on the United States that killed nearly 3000 people.  The entire nation was affected and the event still lingers on the minds of many. Where were you and what were you doing on Sept. 11, 2001?

“I remember being in third grade, in the classroom, doing math. The teacher adjacent to our class called our teacher over for some reason and when our teacher came back she seemed a bit concerned. She called our class over to the other class because our class didn’t have a TV. We sat on the floor watching the TV. They were playing the image over and over again. I went home and it was just all over TV and really hard to watch anything else, but I still didn’t understand the magnitude about it until many years later.” Sal Khan, sophomore biology major

“I was in ninth grade. I remember I was in one of my classes when I heard about it. We did have TVs in the classroom, and my teacher turned on the TV when they heard about it. It was kind of an eerie feeling really. It was so surreal. We were all watching what was happening right in front of us. When we saw the smoke come from one of the towers we were like, ‘What’s going on? Okay, it was an accident’, and then it showed the second plane crashing into it and everyone was really so quiet for such a long time. It was just a feeling of disbelief and sadness for the people that were inside the building and helplessness and shock.” Nicolas Dolan, senior marketing major

“I was getting ready to go to work. I was supposed to be at work around 10:30 and I, basically, was all ready to go on the road, but I was glued to the TV like everybody else. I remember, on ABC, Charlie Gibson was talking while one of their cameras was live on the towers and while he was talking to the other person, the second plane just hit the other tower. And then he said, ‘I think there was another plane that just hit the tower.’ It was sad obviously — a sad moment for all of us not just in the U.S. and those who were victims of it in New York, but throughout the world. It’s just sad to see this type of tragedy happen any place, and, hopefully, it will never happen again anywhere in any part of the world.” Bahaudin Mujtaba, associate professor of International Management

“On Sept. 11, I was feeding my 10-month-old child peas. The TV was not on, and I was living in New Jersey, 30 minutes from the site. My next-door neighbor’s husband was on Flight 93. At 8:30 in the morning, my sister called me and she said, ‘turn on the TV, we’re being attacked.’ She was hysterical; I’ve never heard her hysterical, so I turned on the TV and it was just showing over and over again — the planes hitting the buildings.  I jumped on the phone and called my husband who had a training session in the World Financial (Center) and he was stuck in traffic. At the end of that day, my husband lost his best friend who was a father of three kids under the age of five.  I don’t even know how to describe the smell of it, but the closer you were to the disaster, the more traumatizing it was — the smell was stronger and stronger. I lost some childhood friends and our neighbor who was on Flight 93.” Lorraine Stanchich, adjunct English instructor

“I was in my fifth grade class. I was walking to lunch and I heard my fellow classmate saying, ‘Oh, they killed the president or something’. I was scared. I thought they were going to bomb the school. All these rumors were spreading around, and they evacuated our school and called our parents. We had to go home early, and I was scared; I didn’t know what was going on. I thought we were all going to die or something because I was 10 years old at the time. When I got home, my mom turned on the television. We began to watch the news and we saw what was happening and how the planes were crashing into the towers.” Sophronie Dantica, sophomore biology major

“We had our television on a timer so it would wake us up in the morning. I was living in Washington State at the time. We got up fairly early — between six and seven and I can remember the news talking about something going on in New York City, and it seemed so surrealistic. And it took a while to click — to realize that there was this horrible tragedy going on. So that was how I first heard about and I was like, ‘Oh, my goodness’. I also vividly remember going to work that day and chatting with my fellow colleagues and essentially saying, ‘The world has changed today. The world will not be the same after today as it was before today’. And it hasn’t been.” Robert Speth, professor of pharmaceutical sciences


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