I’m from NYC. I saw 9/11 live, not on TV.
I was on the roof of my office in Long Island City (LIC) that crisp beautiful September morning. My co-workers and I saw the hole in the first tower struck and we remarked that it must be huge to be able to see it from across the river. Then, hearing reports that a small plane hit the building. I remember saying: “Are you joking? How could someone not see that building? There isn’t a cloud in the sky…”
Then, the second plane hit.
My blood ran cold.
We were under attack.
I ran downstairs to call my wife and warn her not to go in to work. My wife worked on 1 Water Street then. I heard later what happened to her subway station. The subway was stopped so I had to take the bus home. I figured she’d be there or she’d get turned around because the trains were out.
I remember the hours trying to contact her were the longest hours of my life.
I was riding the packed bus through Queens. Everyone had theories about what was happening. Nobody knew anything. As I rode the bus through Queens, you could see the buildings on fire.
Then I heard a gasp. There was a billowing white cloud, like those old news reels of the bikini island H bomb tests.
It took forever to start to clear…people’s faces were pressed against the glass like kids on 5th Ave at Christmas time.
It was just gone.
Nobody could believe it.
I took the bus as close to our apartment as I could. The bus dumped me in downtown Brooklyn. It looked like a disaster movie. Everyone eerily quietly walking in one direction, some covered in dust. Looking west, I saw a sea of people walking over the Brooklyn Bridge. I joined the herd, shuffling east, away from the city. I learned both Towers and other WTC buildings were just gone.
I remember vividly paper floating like leaves, blown over the East River from the Towers, just like Autumn leaves blown over from the WTC , littering my street.
It stank like charred plastic for days.
When my wife finally came home, she had ran all the way over the Brooklyn Bridge. She told me about the noise and the whiteout and her evacuation. The ash cloud and the terror everyone felt walking over the Bridge because they figured it wasn’t over, that whomever attacked would go after the bridges next. My wife ran across the Bridge behind the biggest, blackest dude she could find, because she figured everybody would get out of his way.
She was right.
My wife was covered head to toe in that white ash. She threw those clothes away. She’s still in the health study today.
I remember Hillary on day one was out there. She was down at The Pile. She breathed it in too. We all did. I remember Hillary was mad as hell and fighting for the First Responders that were lied to about the air being “safe”.
What I don’t remember was Donald. Where was Donald? Oh that’s right, he was applying for money earmarked for small businesses affected in the Financial District. We weren’t surprised. Everyone in New York knows what a weaselly scumbag he is.
We New Yorkers have long memories. We may forgive but we never forget.
I’m ride or die for #Hillary #Imwithher #NeverForget #911