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    Sept. 11, 2002
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MOST VIVID MEMORIES  
(2nd of 5 pages of memories)
 



People falling or jumping out of the upper floors of the twin towers. — Anonymous, Manhattan


After going to my loft in Tribeca, i walked up Hudson Street. It was such a beautiful and clear sky looking north and such a disaster looking south. The contrast is what sticks in my mind most. — H. Hendershot, Manhattan


People falling out of the building with their ties flapping behind them. I still change the news when they do broadcasts regarding that day. —Anonymous, Manhattan

There were two actually...

1 - I was under the WTC when it got hit on the 1 train. We thought it was a shooting being typical NYers. We heard the noise and then saw the people running back to the train. When I got off at South Ferry, papers and everything were flying towards us.... as I crossed the street to go to my office, I almost got hit by all the fire personnel and police rushing to get there. The determination on their faces was unbelievable!

2- When I finally did leave the office, I remember all the shoes scattered all over the FDR as I was walking to the bridge. That and the papers... burnt and scattered... I will never forget that.. it felt and smelt like death. —Anonymous, New York Metro area


It is a blur. I remember leaving my meeting and heading back to Boston. I still wasn't sure what had happened but I couldn't reach anyone on my cell because the circuits were busy and I saw the cars just pouring out of Boston. I went home to Somerville instead of returning to the office. I remember stopping for groceries. I don't know why. I think I wanted to do something mundane to postpone the realization of what had happened. I listened to NPR broadcasting but I don't remember anything they said. I turned on the t.v. for a while. Then I wandered out of my apartment in a daze.

I haven't been to church in years but I walked down to the local church. I had to sit somewhere quiet, away from the tv to pray. The doors to the church were locked. I don't know how long I sat on the church steps, watching traffic go by, wondering how it was possible that life seemed to be normal when nothing was really ever going to be the same. It is hard to say what is a genuine memory and what isn't. I was in shock for the better part of the morning and there has been so much replay of the day's events that I honestly couldn't tell you what I remember from that day.

I remember my drive home and my trip to the church. I remember locating everyone I knew who could have been harmed and ascertaining that they were (by some miracle) safe. But I don't remember the details from the rest of the day. It is a blur of fire, smoke and the anguished faces of victims, survivors, firefighters, rescue workers and New Yorkers. Anonymous, Massachusetts


Having my baby girl! Marta, Outside of New York Metro area


When the first tower collapsed I watched with a co-worker at the hospital where I work. I couldn’t comprehend what I was seeing. She looked at me and said, “The building is collapsing.” I grabbed her arm in shock, then apologized because I had just started working there and hardly knew her. “No it’s not.” I said. “That’s just debris falling.”

Patients ran to each of the TVs and gasped and screamed 'Oh my God'. But underlying it seemed to be a sense that it wasn’t real – I noticed nervous laughter – they were so used to seeing things like this on TV it was hard to understand that it really was happening. The TV announcer said “Debris is covering lower Manhattan…” and indeed it seemed to be. All I could think was, 'My God, I live in lower Manhattan. Is the cat okay? Is our stuff covered with dust?' Karen, Manhattan


I was stuck on Staten Island because of the bridge being closed. When it finally opened at ten that night i crossed it to go home. i was scared out of my mind to cross the bridge, but had no choice. i was speeding over the bridge and then i saw ground zero from the bridge. i stopped my car on the bridge and just stared at the bright lights at ground zero and i remember crying and saying out loud to myself 'oh my god, look what they did' Jodi, Manhattan



When another passenger on the LIRR train I was on was told on his cell phone that the towers fell. A wave of shock, disbeleif and horror came over me and I started to cry hysterically. A conductor came over, looked me in the eye and said calmly 'You've got to keep it together, all we can do is pray and stay strong right now.' Those words helped me get through the next few hours. Shani, New York Metro area


On my way to work that ridiculously sunny day, I tried to avoid the sun because I didn't want to sweat thru my makeup. I also was contemplating which tank top I should wear for the upcoming weekend. And did I look too fat? A few hours later on my way back from work, I would have given the world to have such trite worries again.

I watched tv until about 3am and I honestly believed I would never be able to smile again. Betty, Manhattan