#2059 | Wednesday, September 11th 2002
It was 11:00 am on Tuesday September 11, 2001. Shakespeare I had just begun and we were still unpacking our backpacks for class. The door opened, and a very disheveled secretary said in a hasty, shaky voice “The world trade center is gone. It’s just gone. Class is dismissed. The pentagon is being bombed.” Our professor looked at her and asked, “What do you mean the World Trade Center is gone?” She didn’t really say anything; she just hurried out the door. Our professor just turned to us and said “I guess we don’t have class today.” I got my things and ran started to call my roommate, Melissa, to find out where she was, but my cell phone wasn’t working. Luckily, she was outside the English building talking to her friend on a bench. I found her and said, “We have to go home right now.” She just kind of looked at me and smiled, and then she must have seen the confusion on my face. I told her what the secretary had said, and she kept asking me if I was sure. It was a mile trek back to my car where we immediately turned on the radio to try to get some idea of what the hell was happening in the world. For the next hour, all we could do was listen as I barreled home. People kept talking about airplanes and explosions and chaos in New York, and all we could do was listen to descriptions. Finally, we got home and sat. My first visual of the mayhem came at 12:30. It was then that the surrealism began in full effect. For the next 8 hours, I was glued to the television. Somehow the images made it all sink in, but it took some time to process. Somehow I felt like I was watching a bad television show rather than something that could really be happening. I remember thinking how strange it was that something occurred that would mark history forever, and I was sitting in class, for more than 2 hours, with no idea. Somehow, that sensation, a year later, hasn’t quite faded.
Michael | 21 | Georgia

#1962 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
fire fighters wer out there but what about the one who r out trhere now fighting. my dad is out there fighting and I find it an insult to not even metion the navy or the army or the airforce. sure u metioned the salvation army but what about the people who r fighting now it is really disapointing to see this
Ashley | 13 | Georgia

#1959 | Tuesday, September 10th 2002
I was sitting in my Biology class waiting on the bell to ring. Only 10 more minutes, I thought. I did not know that the next ten minutes would be filled with horror.Our lab was not completed yet, so we used the Chem lab of a teacher with planning that period. Our Tv's are networked together and that day they were not working. Our teacher told us we could talk until the end of class. We sat and chatted. The teacher whose room we were in walked in briskly and told my coach something and then walked back out. My teacher looked surprised and walked over to the radio (our only source of news). We all hushed because we had no idea what was going on. He said, "Guys, there has been an attack on the World Trade Center." No one said a word as he turned on the radio. The station was frantic and the people on it were screaming. My stomach turned and I felt like I was going to throw up. We all sat around the radio just like it would've been done during WWI and WWII. My mind raced and it seemed like we had just time traveled to the 40's. I'll never forget it. The first words I heard were, "The towers and the Pentagon have been hit." My first thought was Who would want to hurt America? What have we done? After that class let out, noise filled the halls. People were crying, and panic was spreading to the people who hadn't heard yet. All day was spent listening to the radio, but everybody wanted to see to believe. Since we hadn't watched it, no one really wanted to believe it. It didn't seem real. I didn't get to see it until I got home. The sight was absolutely devastating to me, a (then) 15 year old girl from a rural GA town. I never thought something as bad as this could ever happen in my lifetime. But now I know anything is possible. Even now, a year later, I still watch planes closely and shudder when I hear them flying overhead. I will never forget Tuesday, September 11, 2001. No one will.

Holly | 16 | Georgia

#1844 | Monday, September 9th 2002
During the attack, I was at school. When I found out, cold swept through my body, while shedding tears. My teacher was crying. On the Announcements, they said something terrible happened. The terrorists attacked.:(
Alexandra | 11 | Georgia

#1762 | Sunday, September 8th 2002
School had just started in late August at Mercer University in Macon, GA. At the time the first plane hit, I was probably asleep or lying in bed awake in my dorm room, dreading going to my first class at 9:25. It was in that class that I first heard that the World Trade Center had been hit by a plane. I didn't think much about it at the time.

That class ended at 10:40 and I went to my next class. When I entered the building, I noticed a hubbub among some of the students, but I didn't think much about that either and I continued on to the classroom. Someone was watching the television in the upper right hand corner of the room, and that's when I saw the first gaping hole. And said to myself "Oh, this looks bad" but I wasn't thinking terrorist attack. I was thinking it was an accident, even though the sky was clear blue.

I didn't hear anybody else mention anything about terrorist attacks, but I wasn't paying much attention to what anybody had to say at that moment. I could only see one tower because of all the smoke getting in the way, so I didn't realize that the other one had been hit as well.

The rest of my classmates and the professor entered the room, wide-eyed, sat down and stared at the screen just like I did. We watched the first tower fall, and I wasn't sure if my mind was playing tricks on me or what. My mind didn't immediately register that the tower was falling until I heard this gasp from someone in the room.

Then there was news about the Pentagon being hit and we saw those pictures, and then there were news reports/rumors that Camp David had been hit. Thank goodness that one turned out to be false.

Then we had to watch the second tower fall, and sometime during all this a letter was distributed around campus from the President of the university stating that our classes were cancelled for the day and that there would be a memorial service in the university chapel. I'm not much for religion, but I went because I felt like I had to do something. After the ceremony, I stayed glued to the television set all day long, then all week long, then all month long, and to this day the only thing I really watch on television is the 24 hour news channels.

After that day, we talked about what happened in class for the next couple of days. I remember being pissed off, I didn't even grieve until well after a week of the tragedy. I was too angry and I wanted to hit back at someone.

One thing that has changed for me is my interest in international affairs. I knew some of what happened outside of US borders before the attacks, but my interest really started to peak after this, especially in regards to the Middle East. I can't say I was surprised at the attack, though. I'd seen the "Death to America" chants and ritual US flag-burning in the Middle East on special reports on ABC, NBC, etc for years, so I figured it was just a matter of time, especially when the writing seemed to be on the wall after the embassy bombings and the USS Cole bombing and the towers and the first WWC bombing.

Now I've just heard about some Al Queda guys who were interviewed on Al-Jazeera revealed that the original plan was to attack nuclear plants. In light of that, we were actually lucky that we got the Sept. 11 that we did as a wakeup call, bad as it was. Now I hope the government can prevent them from carrying out those original plans, but I just have a bad feeling. I've become much more cynical of the world and I don't trust anyone outside of family and friends. I don't know who to trust or believe and so I've resigned myself not to trust or believe anyone--not our government, not the European Union, or the UN, or anybody else.

Kori | 21 | Georgia

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