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9/11 - The Saddest Day in American History

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“9/11 is a day that I will never be able to forget, even if I wanted to”. When my aunt Sheree said that, I then knew how important and life-changing this event really was to her. She experienced this event first hand, as she was on a work trip to New York. Eighteen years ago on a sunny September morning, thousands of people in New York City were getting ready for what they thought would be an average day. Unknown to them, something devastating was heading there way. “I remember getting up and going to work like any other normal day”. Everyone, including my aunt, had no idea of the horror and chaos that was to come.

At 7:59am, American Airlines Flight 11 takes off from Boston’s Logan International Airport headed to Los Angeles. The 6 hour 30 minute flight was set to be super smooth and an easy ride. Around 8:19am flight attendants alerted ground personnel that the flight had been hijacked. Ground personnel sprung into a panic and ordered two fighter jets to tail the hijacked plane. No one knew what to do or what was going to happen, this was the first major terrorist attack on U.S. soil.

As people on the ground frantically tried to figure out what the next step should be, flight eleven had been flown directly into the north tower of the World Trade Center. Mohammed Atta had crashed the plane into the 93rd through 99th floors, instantly killing everyone on board. No one was expecting it because there had been no warning issued and this attack was on a major scale. As news channels broadcasted the smoke and fire coming from the building, New York Police Department had dispatched units to the tower to help rescue the people still inside the building. “I overheard people yelling and screaming down the hall and I went to see what had happened. I didn’t see the plane hit but I saw the smoke and the fire that came from the hole in the tower.” My aunt told me that she had to stop and just stand there for a few minutes to take in what had just happened. She said it was such a shock that this could have ever taken place in America.

By this time the other plane had already been in the air and was headed to the south tower. The hijackers were ready and waiting for the right time to attack. Emergency personnel were on site evacuating people from both towers and the surrounding area when at 9:03 flight 175 crashed into the 75th through 85th floors of the south tower. The impact instantly killed everyone on board and the hundreds of people inside.

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“I watched as the second plane hit the other tower and I was speechless. How could this be happening? I was so scared that there would be more planes and was fearful for my life.” My aunt told me how afraid everyone was and that some people were becoming hysterical.

After the planes hit the towers, New York Police Department and other emergency personnel were frantic to help the people inside the building and get those survivors out to safety. They were making the climb up the stairs to assist people in need, but little did they know that it would all be in vain as the south tower had grown weak and was unstable. The building could no longer support its own weight and at 9:59 the south tower collapsed and crushed any remaining people inside. When the tower fell, all the dust and debris came pouring out in a cloud that engulfed the city. The smoke became so thick that you could only see a few feet in front of yourself. The people that were outside when the tower fell got covered from head to toe in the soot. It was like a war zone with people running frantically to try to escape the horror that had just happened.

After only a few hours the north tower to collapsed at 10:28. The city had been shut down and the mayor had called for an evacuation of lower Manhattan. Everyone was on high alert and police were doing the best they could to help anyone in need.

President Bush had put all military forces on high alert and the Navy had sent missile destroyers to the New York area. By this time it was mid afternoon and the attacks had stopped but there was still work to be done to help any survivors. The country had been shut down and no one knew exactly what was going to happen next. “I was on high alert and didn’t really know what to do next. Everyone was worried and confused. We were unsure of what we needed to do next.” My aunt told me that even though the attacks had stopped, people were still so fearful.

The 9/11 attacks were a day that will forever be burned into the memories of millions of peoples minds. It was a day of great tragedy and sorrow. President Bush called the attacks “evil, despicable acts of terror” and that is exactly what they were. The people who committed the attacks were cold heartless men. It was one of the saddest days in American history but it was also a day of pride among the American people. We came together as a country that day and in the pain over lost loved ones, we grew as a nation and supported each other in our greatest time of need.

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9/11 – The Saddest Day in American History. (2022, September 01). Edubirdie. Retrieved January 30, 2023, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/9-11-the-saddest-day-in-american-history/
“9/11 – The Saddest Day in American History.” Edubirdie, 01 Sept. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/9-11-the-saddest-day-in-american-history/
9/11 – The Saddest Day in American History. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/9-11-the-saddest-day-in-american-history/> [Accessed 30 Jan. 2023].
9/11 – The Saddest Day in American History [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Sept 01 [cited 2023 Jan 30]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/9-11-the-saddest-day-in-american-history/
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