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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Remembering September 11th

Nine years ago today a terrible tragedy happened in our beautiful country. It was a gorgeous day...picture perfect. I was living in Brooklyn, NY on my way to work on the subway. We were at the Dekalb Avenue station about to cross the Manhattan Bridge when I heard the announcer come on the loudspeaker. He said that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. Usually, when you ride the subway everyday you know every stop coming up for work and you don't pay attention to the announcements (usually you listen when the train hasn't moved in some time). Once we started approaching the Manhattan Bridge I looked out the window and couldn't believe my eyes and I gasped. I will never forget seeing the flames and smoke coming out of the tower. As we crossed the bridge and got into the city you could only hear the rumble of the train on the tracks, there was absolute silence on the train. As I got off my stop at Grand Central Station you could see the shock and sadness on everyone's faces and within seconds the transit police telling everyone to evacuate Grand Central. As I got to my office, we were all hugging each other, asking if anybody knew anyone in the towers, the flights, etc. We were calling people who weren't in the office yet. We sat in the offices with TV's and watched in horror. All I could do was think of everyone in those buildings and their families. When both towers fell my heart just sank and the tears were uncontrollable. When we heard about the Pentagon and Shanksville, PA and the lives that were lost on the planes that day we were all just devastated.

I will never forget in the hours and days that passed all the news reports, the pictures of loved ones missing posted everywhere and just the sadness in everyone's eyes. How total strangers would touch someone's shoulder or give a hug to comfort one another. I knew two people that died on that tragic day. One woman, Joann Rubino, who was a friend of the family and the other was Daniel Crisman my friend Danielle's fiance. They were good people who did not deserve this to happen to them.

As every day that passed, you would see how people changed. I changed. You were cautious of your surroundings, but, you went out of your way for anyone that crossed your path. The way that people used to perceive New Yorkers that we were rude and selfish was long gone. People were now seeing the real New Yorker. We are strong, resilient, supportive, caring and we know what we want and we are not afraid to express it. We speak the truth and stand by our word. But, if someone needs help or is in danger, we are there to help them.

I remember when I was younger my parents would take my sister, my brother and I up to the top of  Twin Towers and we would stay up there for hours. Whenever, we would drive from Brooklyn into Manhattan I would always treasure seeing the skyline. We would go to the promenade in Brooklyn to see the fireworks for the 4th of July. I also had my senior prom at the Vista, which being 17 and seeing the Twin Towers at night for your prom was thrilling. For my birthday in August 2001, my friends and I went on a dinner cruise that went around Manhattan. It was so beautiful seeing the skyline at night and especially how beautiful downtown and the Statue of Liberty looked. We were all saying to each other that we should all plan a night to go out to dinner at Windows of the World...which unfortunately we never got to do.

My thoughts and prayers are with those lives lost and families who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001. Thank you to all the first responders from the FDNY, NYPD and the NYARNG (101 Cav, 69th IN, 256 FA) who risked their lives that tragic day. Thank you to all the men and women who defend our freedom by serving in the Military. We will never forget!!

6 comments:

  1. Hi Alisha~ I share in your sentiment. This is a lovely, moving post. Love seeing your beautiful creations lately as I am catching up.
    Missed stopping by your blog.
    I hope you are doing well.
    Hugs,
    Sonia

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  2. You have written this so well and thanks so much for sharing your thoughts and memories. I think it's a day we all remember...even though I am on the other side of the world....I remember it being a quiet day here too. As we all sat in front of our TV's waiting for more news.

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  3. Oh wow Alisha...i didn't realize that you were present for this horrific day! How this much of changed your life in so many different ways. I remember watching it on TV thinking at first it was a joke...no realizing how real it all was until the towers fell and all just went still. It was truly an awful and terrifying day. Thanks for sharing your story. :)

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  4. Alicia I think as native New Yorkers we all share similar stories and memories of the Twin Towers growing up and on that day. I too have the same memories of feeling so grown up going to Prom at the Vista and tonight I almost cried when I was telling a friend that where my prom was held no longer exists.

    Saskia

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  5. Alisha-
    Beautiful comments. I know how you feel. I was witness to this horrible day and lost friends and have close friends who lost family. All our lives changed.

    We live in Pittsburgh,PA now, so I know how one can miss NYC. Hope you and your family are well.

    Mike

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  6. What a nice post. Thanks for sharing
    ~Stopping by from SITS

    ReplyDelete

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