10 years later

September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City: V...

Sept. 11, 2001

As we approach the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, DC, we are, once again, inundated with images of Sept. 11. Many news organizations are looking back and many communities are holding memorials on Sunday.

I, like you, remember exactly what I was doing that morning. It’s important to remember and I invite others to share their memories on this site.

Ten years ago I was working at The Signal newspaper. The community was still reeling over the death of Deputy Jake Kuredjian who was killed during a shoot out while serving a warrant in Stevenson Ranch.

My husband and teenage son joined a group of guys for a weeklong hunting trip in Alaska and I was home with my youngest son. As usual, I had the television on as I got ready for work on Tuesday and watched in disbelief as the second plane hit the World Trade Center in New York. My colleague at the newspaper called me and said I should come in to work immediately. Why would an airplane disaster on the east coast affect us here on the west coast? Watch, she said, everything will start shutting down.

She was right.

All of us at the newspaper were glued to the television like the rest of the world. Information was sketchy and there were a lot of questions about what exactly was going on. For the next couple of days, the reporters at our little community newspaper worked day and night as information slowly came to light.

Airplanes were grounded and people were stranded all over. My husband and son waited three days for a seaplane to pick up the hunters in the Alaskan wildness. They had no idea what had transpired until they were rescued on that Friday and the pilot brought them out a case of beer and some newspapers.

One of my neighbors had a relative visiting from New York who was due to fly back that Tuesday. He couldn’t book a flight for over a week (he eventually moved his entire family to Santa Clarita).

And tragically, I also found out one of my high school classmates had a daughter on one of the planes coming home from New York after a summer internship.

Other parents watched as their children signed up for military service in record numbers. Some of those children didn’t come home either.

We are still fighting this war, trying to rebuild New York, waiting in long lines to board airplanes while we throw away water bottles and subject ourselves to intensive screening. Are we safer? Will this war ever be over? Can the families of the victims and those who worked at the Trade Center site ever be fully compensated?

Our world changed on Sept. 11 and who knows if we can make things right, but we will always remember where we were and how we felt.

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One Response to “10 years later”

  1. Cheryl Phillips Says:

    I remember a friend calling to wake me up and tell me to turn on the TV. It was a horrible accident, I thought. Then – Tower 2 was hit. I watched and watched in disbelief while I got ready to go to work. I actually don’t remember much of that day. Working as a librarian in an elementary school we had to use discretion in what we said to the students. Each family would want to handle it in their own way with children so young.

    What I do remember is a little boy, who went to Peachland School. On Career Day in Kindergarten many years before 911, he told his teacher he was going to be a fireman. A few days after 911 Fireman Jeff Harms boarded a plane to NYC to help relieve the firefighters there, so that they might attend the funerals of their fellow firefighters. I was so very proud of him and knew how important it was for him to be there to support “his brother firemen.” Today I rest easy, and my pride continues as Captain Jeff Harms heads up our own Santa Clarita Firehouse 126. Thank you, Jeff, and to all our firefighters that go to work everyday making our safety, our lives and our community their priority – Thank you, thank you, thank you.

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