Journal Jar Q40. Where Were You On 9/11, When the Twin Towers Were Attacked?


Wow. Almost fifteen years ago, and I can still remember so clearly feeling just terrified, as though the whole world was under attack.

William was a baby and was at nursery that afternoon. I’d been to Exeter to do a mystery shopping job and was driving home when I heard on the radio that a plane had crashed into the first tower. I can even remember the radio programme I was listening to – Steve Wright on Radio 2.

When I got home I switched Sky News on, and just watched the whole thing unfold, I think in a state of disbelief. I remember watching the first tower collapse, live, and just not being able to quite believe it.

I phoned Ashley at work, and he was much the same – just a total sense of disbelief.

I will never forget watching the people jump from the windows and actually hearing the bodies hit the ground – not something I want to dwell on, but again something that will stick in my mind forever.

And as I sit typing this, I have just heard that more than 30 innocent people have been gunned down by Islamic terrorists on a beach in Tunisia (I write these posts in advance, so this may well be old news by the time you read this). Which yet again quite clearly proves that the War on Terror was a very costly – both in terms of money and in human lives – failure. Something must be done to stop these lunatics.

Where were you on that day?  Do you have any particular memories of it?


18 thoughts on “Journal Jar Q40. Where Were You On 9/11, When the Twin Towers Were Attacked?

  1. I too have such strong memories of this time. I can remember being at work and at first we thought it was a hoax and then watching it unfold. Then there was the hours of waiting whether we could leave the office/London in safety despite all we wanted to do was get home.

    I was actually staying with a friend at that time who I worked with and we gathered all our friends at her house and just watched the news over and again. Two friends were also in NY and we couldn’t get hold of them so there was worry then and fielding phone calls. Luckily they had flown out the previous evening, landing safely in the morning and settling into a jetlagged fog. You can imagine when they woke up and saw the news/missed calls from worried friends and family and realised how lucky they had been.

    Victoria x

  2. I was at work (for the MoD) and can remember a girl from another office coming in and telling us that a plane had crashed into one of the towers. Complete shock. I phoned home to speak to my partner and was shocked to hear the emotion in his voice as he relayed what he was seeing on the TV, which was the attack on the second tower. On the way home some time later, listening to the radio, I heard that the first tower had collapsed and I had to stop driving while I recovered from the shock. As you say, just total disbelief and also fear for what this act of terrorism could mean for the world.

  3. Sorry, I pressed the button by mistake!
    At the time my partner’s son worked in Canary Wharf in London, in the tallest building so there was the added fear that that may also be attacked. It took his hours to get home as transport was disrupted and I remember the anxiety and helplessness as we waited to hear that he was safe.

  4. I was at work in a Federal Government hospital setting – one of the nurses from the home care office across the hall came into my office and asked if I’d heard about the accident in New York. That’s what we all thought the first plane was, a freak accident. Moments later, the second plane and this was no accident. I ran into the conference room next door and pulled the television out of the closet and plugged it in. I was joined with minutes by the staff from adjoining offices and we all watched the news footage in shock and disbelief. Sophia was at school and my childcare provider (a good friend whose daughter was the same age) called to say she was picking her daughter up from school and did she want me to pick up Sophia as well and take her to her house. Yes, please. The scene at work became more frantic; moveable concrete blocks were put into place at all the main entrances, no-one came in without proper ID, bed counts were called in hourly in case there was another incident and we had to prepare for casualties. Down the street at the military base where Vic was working, in addition to concrete blocks and extra security, everyone on high alert, no cars were allowed onto the base. The next day was a scene out of a science fiction movie, men and women in uniform walking to work, hundreds of them. Those who lived farther away joined the long line of cars that were able to get only to a certain point to drop off the service members who would walk the remaining distance. At some point during that dreadful first day, we watched the towers come down and saw the Pentagon and the report from Shanksville. Mum called from England, crying over the phone as she recounted watching the report of the family members of Cantor Fitzgerald employees, the company that was on one of the floors that took a direct hit. Wives, children, other family members with their heart-broken cries of “Have you seen so and so?”. Horrific doesn’t seem a strong enough word for the events of that day.

  5. We were on vacation in England and were in a shop in Chipping Norton when I saw it on tv, couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Our daughter lived outside Washington DC and we were terrified for her.
    We contacted Delta to see if we could get home sooner, but we had to wait a week to get a flight. Longest week of my life.

  6. I was at home getting ready for my late afternoon job and a news Flash came on the TV and I turned Sky News on and like you Caroline watched the second plane hit the tower and watched the horror unfold,I will never forget seeing the towers crumble knowing there were people inside and also in the planes,seeing people running covered in dust, it was a horrible thing to watch, I will never forget those images,when I got to work I was trying to explain to my colleagues who head heard about it on the radio news and I remember saying when you see it on the news you won’t believe what you see had happened. Tragic X

  7. I was living in Connecticut – less than 100 miles from New York. Bee was at nursery (I still have the picture she made that day) and Paddy was a baby…. I had come home and put the tv on for the news….. after the first plane hit I called my friend in Boston to see if she could believe it and we saw the 2nd plane hit. Being ‘close’ to the area and having other planes going AWOL and the American airspace shut down was both scary and surreal – no-one really knew what was happening and where else it may affect. It was one of the few times Hubby wasn’t traveling in US too. Some UK friends phoned to check he was ok. He was. We were lucky. We knew people who lost friends and my friend in Boston – her daughter was in the same infant school class as a kid whose mum was a flight attendant. Just awful.
    Incidentally, Hubby’s boss at the time shut off their office internet that day so people wouldn’t ‘waste time’ watching the news and not working. I know.
    We visited the memorial in Washington too last year. Still extremely awful.

  8. I can remember it all watching on TV and thinking it was like a disaster movie especially The Towering Inferno. My daughter was in London at the time at Uni and I was petrified there would be a similar attack there.

  9. I heard it on Steve Wright too Caroline. I had just finished my shift at Gatwick and on my way home dropped in to Sainsburys and heard it on the car radio. I thought it sounded like a light aircraft had hit the tower so didn’t really think too much about it until my mum’s neighbour who worked in Sainsburys rushed up to me and asked if I’d heard the news and told me about the Pentagon. I rushed home and watched the telly for the next six hours just not being able to believe it. It did seem just like a disaster film didn’t it? Work was chaos for the next week with planes grounded, new security measures and irate passengers. (yes really) I recently viewed a training video which included footage from that day. I think around 200 people jumped to their deaths and after watching it the room was silent, even after all these years.

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