Its hard to believe its already been 7 years since 9/11. It was less than an hour after I got to work that I noticed a crowd of my co-workers gathered around my boss’s office. I walked over and asked what was going on. Jeff, a co-worker said “some idiot flew his plan into the trade tower”. I watched the TV in the office as the news anchor commented about the plane, and I can’t remember if it was my co-workers or the news anchor that said it was a Cessna plane. Then as I watched the live news feed at 9:03 am, the second plan buried itself into the south tower and everything changed.
I wish I had gone home from work that day early. I wish I had spent that day with my wife. I worked for Safelite Autoglass in Columbus Ohio and I will never forget my boss walking through the office slapping his hands together with one big clap to brake the somber mood in the room and saying “Let’s keep working, the world still needs windshields!” I’m sure it was his way of dealing with the crisis, I just wish I hadn’t let it be mine.
I will never forget my wife calling me in tears hysterically sobbing because she had just watched people jumping from the towers. All I could do was whisper “I know baby, I know” in an effort to comfort her. I should have gone home. I remember walking into our call center, normally a loud room full of CSRs on the phones reading scripts about windshields and chatting with each other between calls; silenced by events over 500 miles away. And I remember waiting to hear if Charley, my co-worker and friend, had heard from his parents, who had been traveling in New York. They were ok… well, they weren’t near the towers, but none of us were OK.
I remember that day. I remember those events. My children won’t. Much like the events surrounding the attack on Pear Harbor, time will heal and erase those events from our collective minds. In the weeks that followed, American flags hung from every window or in every yard in the USA and even in much of the world – but as we reflect on the last 7 years, most of those flags are down, most of us have moved on with our lives. History has recorded the events and our children’s children will learn of 9/11 in a history book… but I remember.