Remembering 9-11: Locals reflect on a day war was waged on American soil

If you’re old enough, most of us remember where we were twenty years ago on Sept. 11 when two jets were taken hostage and flown into New York City’s Twin Towers. We asked some of our local readers for their memories of 9-11 and here’s what they shared.

Kristen McDaniel

I was starting my sophomore year at SWT/Texas State. My mom called my dorm and woke me to watch the news. I saw the plane hit the second tower live on TV and the breaking news when the Pentagon was hit. The reporters were in shock. I went about my normal morning and walked up hill to my first class to take a quiz. Everyone I passed was talking about New York or the towers, the chatter was so surreal. The power went out in our classroom shortly after we started our quiz. The professor kept us in class, likely concerned that the outage was somehow related. Thankfully it wasn’t. We finished our quiz and life hasn’t been quite the same since.

Ymra Naratev 

I was an active duty soldier stationed at Germany Army base. When I was leaving the gate, I got stopped by a military police telling me that the base is now on lockdown and I will not be able to enter again! I went straight to pick up my infant son and had to stay at the daycare until they reopened the base. While at the daycare, I was On Guard Duty not allowing anyone to enter the daycare premises. We were on hold watching the terrible events live on tv.

Michelle Harper 

I was in my first year of teaching and had a classroom of 7th graders in Gonzales, Texas. Our principal came on the loud speaker and asked us “to remember the victims of the bombing in New York” during our moment of silence. I turned on the TV just as they showed the 2nd plane hit the towers. The whole class was in shock but thought it was an accident. I remember a teacher across the hall from me breaking down when the plane hit the Pentagon because her brother worked in the section that was hit. He was luckily in a meeting in a different section but we didn’t find that out until after school let out that day. I know I will never forget those children in my classes that day asking so many questions and me not having any answers. 

Irvin Reyes 

I was living in the Bronx, New York and I was in middle school. I remember students being picked up one after another because parents were so scared. The principal announced over the speaker phone the twin tower was hit. I can see the smoke and the towers all the way from the bronx and I can look over Manhattan. I watch the news all afternoon with my parents in disbelief. My biggest motivation and inspiration was to join the military and to personally take the fight to the Taliban.  I got to join the Army and got deployed over seas. I had the honor to serve in the infantry  and visit ground zero years later and eventually visit the new freedom tower. 

David Banderman 

After the shock, I just remember all Americans uniting as one. In this current climate I don’t think that could happen. It seems patriotism is a thing of the past unfortunately. As Reagan said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” 

Kellie Osborn

I was a freshman in high school, in Comfort, Texas, I came out of my first period English class to be told by someone in Band that a plane hit the Pentagon. I ran across campus to my second period history class, turned the TV on to CNN, and watched the second plane hit live while I was sitting on the top of my desk crying. Nobody else realized what was happening, they thought it was a movie. Some of the teachers let us watch the coverage, but the majority of them refused to allow us to watch the coverage because “school was more important.” I was 14 at the time, and will never forget anything about that day. 

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