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      My 9/11/2001 story.....     
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distinguished member(5077)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/11/2019 06:51AM
Remembering 9/15

There were only eighteen hours before my next excursion to the Quetico when my phone rang, it was my partner and he didn’t have good news. He told me he wasn’t feeling well and wouldn’t be able to make the trip. I told him to get some rest and I would call him in the morning to see if his condition had changed. Then I became sick, I literally felt sick to my stomach after hearing our trip was cancelled.
I began stewing over the notion of doing a solo outing to the Quetico. I had never been on a solo trip before and would have liked more time to mentally and physically prepare for such an undertaking. After about an hour’s time I made the decision no matter what I was still going to go.
I called him in the morning and his status hadn’t changed. He told me I should cancel the trip and not risk going it alone. I stated I was going with or without him. He could not comprehend my passion for the Quetico. So began my solo adventure with a road trip to Ely.
Day 1 – September 9th
Once at Williams and Hall Outfitters on Moose Lake, I sorted through all of the gear and supplies and managed to pack it all into one backpack. Chuck, my tow boat driver, navigated us over to Prairie Portage while a cold mist slapped me in the face. I was the first one to arrive there to go through the ranger station, but I wasn’t the only person there. Quetico Park Superintendent Robin Reilly and his assistant Dave Maynard were there as well. They were on their final leg of a “Cross-Quetico” project which entailed bringing with them a hand-carved Don Meany paddle to be given to the mayor of Ely from the mayor of Atikokan. It was a goodwill\friendship gesture from Atikokan, Canada which was handed over to the U.S. Forest Service for delivery. Bob Cary from the Ely Echo was on hand to capture the presentation with photos and prose. There were also two more extra rangers in the station when I was invited in for processing. They were just heading out to Basswood’s North Bay to look at some areas being designated for a prescribed burn.
After picking up my permits I loaded the over-sized backpack into the front of the tandem canoe and headed north. The rain had stopped and there wasn’t much wind, which made for an easy paddle across Bayley Bay. As I neared the first portage out of Bayley Bay an eagle flew across my bow to signal a greeting from the Quetico.
There was a sign posted at the portage explaining the camping restrictions in this area after September 17th due to the prescribed burn. I struggled to pick up my behemoth pack before the start of this easy eighty rod portage. When I reached the other side there was an older couple on there way out of the park. I picked up their remaining gear and carried it back across the portage for them. They were grateful for the kind gesture. I slung my canoe to my shoulders and headed back down the trail.
Paddling across the calm Burke Lake I started to feel the tensions of everyday life pour out of my skin. All I heard was the stroke of the paddle and water dripping back into the lake. I began to feel good about this whole solo thing I was embarking on. The rain started again when I reached the next portage. A simple up and over and then I was gliding down the stream heading north. One more rocky and muddy portage before arriving at Basswood’s North Bay.
A nice island campsite was found and camp was erected. There was nothing left to do but to go fishing at this point. I wasn’t out there long before I started to see some voracious top-water hits. Smallmouth bass were chasing baitfish. I in turn chased the smallmouth. On the first cast with my bull frog colored Lucky 13 a seventeen incher slammed it off of the surface. I ended up catching five in the seventeen to nineteen inch range and a fat one over twenty inches; it had to be close to five pounds. The gulls told me where the smallmouth were feeding as they would dive down to the surface when bait fish were being chased to the top. I would paddle over towards where the gulls landed and fling my lure in their direction; most of the time I didn’t even need to move it before it enticed a strike.
As I paddled around the island fishing two moose were spotted not more than two-hundred feet from my campsite. There was a cow and her calf eating twigs. I took some pictures and just bobbed on the lake watching them for awhile. Once back at camp I met my new companion, his name was Rocky. I named him after Rocky the squirrel from the Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoon. He would chatter at me and I would talk to him. I think we basically understood each other.
My back was starting to hurt from that over- sized pack I was hauling around earlier, so I decided it was time to relax and get a fire going. It was in the 50s and windy as I watched the sunset on another beautiful Quetico day. My final journal entry read the following “The stars tonight are as clear as I’ve ever seen before. The Milky Way splashed across the darken skies. Stars fell threw the Big Dipper as if it were catching tear drops from the heavens”.

Day 2 – September 10th
I woke up to the sound of rain and wind hitting the tarp over the tent. No big deal, my back was still sore from yesterday and could use the extra rest. I made a mental note to separate my gear and food into different packs for the next solo trip. It was too windy to fish the west side of the island today so I made my way east to try some protective coves. I soon became aware it was windy over there as well. It was tough fishing solo in the wind and I didn’t have much luck. I was able to trigger one strike from a northern pike on my Lucky 13. It bashed its head against the canoe a couple of times during the struggle. The pike measured out at thirty-four inches. After that I tried to work my way back to camp along the shoreline. The waves tossed me back and forth similar to riding a mechanical bull.
It remained windy throughout the day and I tried fishing a couple of more times but I didn’t catch anything worth speaking about, a few smallmouth, no real size. I basically rested most of the day and tried to keep my firewood dry for the evening fire.
Day 3 – September 11th
I began the day watching the sunrise ascend above the trees. Fishing the east side coves again didn’t prove productive so I went back to camp and waited for the wind to calm down. Once it did, I paddled back to the west side of the island to see about catching some more smallies on top-water. The smallmouth were there and the top-water fishing was fantastic. I caught a handful more of seventeen to nineteen inch smallmouth all on the Lucky 13. They were very aggressive, one time I had a smallmouth come loose from the lure and before the lure could surface another one snatched it up.
Requiring a break in the action I headed to a flat point and pulled over to stand up and stretch. During my break I decided to make a few casts with the Lucky 13. On my second cast, not more than ten feet from shore, I saw a huge pike come out of nowhere. I froze the lure as the pike looked on in caution. It slowly moved toward the lure and just sucked it off the surface. I let her swim with it for about a foot and then swung the rod back crossing her eyes. It made a couple of strong runs, but since I hooked it so close to shore it didn’t have a chance. I was able to coax her onto the level shoreline and grab her. I broke out the measuring tape and it said forty-three inches on the nose. This was the biggest pike I had ever caught before. Three big problems existed after the catch: 1) I didn’t have any film left in the disposable camera to take a picture of the fish 2) The spare camera was back at camp and 3) There was no one there to take a picture of me holding up my trophy. I just sat her back in the water and watched her swim away.
I fished the west side of the island off and on the rest of the day with the same success. I could not have asked for much better fishing. As I was taking another break on the same point where the pike was caught a solo canoeist stopped by to chat with me while he waited for his tandem canoe partners who were lagging behind. This gave me an opportunity to brag about the pike I had caught. Once the rest of his party arrived, he relayed my conquest on to them and I felt proud. It was nice talking to someone other than Rocky the squirrel back at camp.
During my evening fire I heard noises from a critter running through camp. I quickly turned on my headlamp and was able to see an otter. I watched as it ran across my granite front porch and dove into the lake. I could see its eyes reflecting back at me from the lake when I looked over that way.
Day 4 – September 12th
I made a decision to stay on North Bay instead of traveling to a new location. First off, the fishing was tremendous when the wind wasn’t blowing and secondly, the wind was blowing hard again and I didn’t feel up to moving in it. Most of the day was spent collecting wood and eating, trying to lighten the load for when I did move.
Late in the afternoon I couldn’t stand hanging around camp any longer and made my way out into the waves. I worked the canoe to the backside of the island for a wind break. Fishing wasn’t very good back there and I only caught a few small ones. I did enjoy watching a couple of bald eagles hovering in the wind for a period of time.
I headed back to camp to enjoy some dinner and a fire. It was still windy and starting to cool off compared to the other nights. I watched the stars peek out from behind the clouds every now and then. The whole day was nothing but wind. It was a long day.
Day 5 - September 13th
The day started off rainy, windy and colder than the past days. I had a couple of choices, go back to the tent and rest or go fishing. Since I did not come to the Quetico to be comfortable, I went fishing. Once again I had to find a calm section back behind the island to fish. Fishing was basically slow, a few pike and a few smallmouth of no real size were caught. I heard a helicopter hovering around the area and when I arrived back at camp I could see it over to east side of the lake. The ranger told me I might see one during the week. They were there checking out the major blow-down from the July 4th straight line windstorm from 1999. I assumed they were preparing this area for the planned prescribed burn.
On my second fishing session of the day back behind the island I saw the biggest flock of mergansers I had ever seen before. There must have been 50 of them back there diving and chasing bait fish. It was a site to behold. I did manage one nice eighteen inch smallmouth on the Lucky 13. Shortly thereafter I had a beaver swim by me as I was fishing a little pinch between the island and the mainland.
When I arrived back at camp I had a visitor running around, a not so shy grouse. I started a fire as it was beginning to cool off during sunset. Temperatures dropped down to 32 degrees that evening. It had been another difficult day to fish in the wind while solo.
Day 6 – September 14th
It was cold and calm with a hazy, misty fog floating through the air in the morning. As I stood along the shoreline at camp a bald eagle appeared out of the mist and flew directly above my head. It was so close I could hear the wind coming off its wings.
Since it was calm I was able to hit the west side of the island and do some more top-water fishing with the Lucky 13. In about an hour’s time I was able to pick up 5 smallmouth in the eighteen to twenty inch range. I wanted to stay longer but my plan for the day was to pack and move before the wind came up.
At the first portage to the stream heading south there were already four canoes there, three tandems and a solo. I had a brief chat and portaged by all of them. I paddled the stream up to the next portage and did the up and over to Burke Lake. I paddled Burke Lake in a decent time to the landing at the last portage over to Bayley Bay. There must have been twelve or more people there. Three were leaving and the rest were just coming into the park. The people coming into the park had to be mostly rookies by the way they were reacting with giddiness to finishing such an easy portage. I briefly talked to one gentleman there, but no news was given to me about the” civilized” world. I still had another day before needing to know what was going on there anyway.
I was glad to see there weren’t any major rollers on Bayley Bay when I arrived. I made my way down to a campsite towards Inlet Bay. After setting up camp I decided to fish a little cove near by and to my dismay there was a motor boat back there fishing. He was fishing in a non-motor area. I made a few casts and then went back to camp to wait for him to leave. While I was there a float plane taxied off of Inlet Bay and couldn’t had been more than 100 feet above me. That was the first and only time I had ever seen a float plane in that bay.
I went back to fish the cove later and only came away with a few hammer handle pike. I did manage to get rather close to a bald eagle that didn’t mind posing for a few camera shots.
Day 7 – September 15th
I was up before the sunrise and started packing with a headlamp on. I loaded up the canoe and pushed off for one last paddle to the border. The lake was calm and had that early morning misty fog drifting around. The sun had started to climb over the trees as I made my way south. I had a sad feeling about leaving the Quetico, I normally do.
As I approached the border I could see the American flag was flying at half mast at the motor boat landing. I had hoped that someone just didn’t get the flag all the way to the top of the pole. Then I looked to the other side and saw the Canadian flag was flying at half mast as well. My first thoughts were that someone extremely important must have died. It was all kind of surreal, paddling through the fog, being melancholy about my departure and seeing both flags flying at half mast.
At the top of Prairie Portage I met a father\son team from Wisconsin. I started a conversation with the son as his father went down to the ranger station. We talked about fishing for awhile until he just stopped and stated “you don’t know what is going on in the world do you?” I mentioned something about the flags flying at half mast and having no idea why they were that way. He started to explain to me that on September 11th a plane flew into the World Trade Center. I then asked if many people were hurt. He said you don’t understand, the World Trade Center buildings are gone, they are both gone. He went on to tell me another one hit the Pentagon and one more was heading towards the Whitehouse when it crashed in a field. I couldn’t believe or imagine what he was trying to explain to me at the time. The first time I was at Prairie Portage I was watching two countries exchange a goodwill paddle, and then on my next visit I was told about terrorists attacking the United States. There was a stark contrast between the two days.
I arrived back at the outfitters and there were two gentlemen there trying to figure out how they were going to travel home since all of the flights were canceled. I overheard they were from Cincinnati, 90 miles south from my home. I offered two complete strangers a long lift home, but they opted not to take the offer. They said they would probably rent a car.
For the next eight hours I listened to the car radio about this news and was still having a hard time processing it all. Once I stopped and registered into a hotel room, I turned on the TV and watched it for the first time. I watched for the next three hours and then forced myself to turn off the TV and get some sleep.
For years I had told people going into the Quetico with me that World War III could happen and you would never know. This was not World War III, but it was an attack on the United States of America. It was four days after 9/11 before I had any idea about the attack of innocent people on American soil. God bless the people who lost their lives in the 9/11 tragedy. God bless America.

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distinguished member(3919)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 07:13AM

The COO of the company I was working for lead the rebellion on flight 93. For the rest of us it was pretty much business as usual.

distinguished member(5077)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/11/2019 07:22AM
inspector13: "The COO of the company I was working for lead the rebellion on Flight 93. For the rest of us it was pretty much business as usual. "
A true hero!
distinguished member(960)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 08:30AM
Crazy story. I always wonder what might happen when I am in there. Nothing so far for me. My cousin went in and while he was in my grandpa passed away and was buried before my cousin came out. Can only imagine the shock of that or 9/11.
distinguished member (395)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 08:43AM
One of the clearest memories of my lifetime was 9/11. I was leaving the driveway of my babysitter, who had a beautiful home in the country. I turned left down the white-gravel road of the driftless area of Wisconsin, my homeland, to my first herd check of the morning, offering a prayer of gratitude for my life's blessings, including this day. It was, without comparison, the clearest, most crisp, bluest sky contrasting with the intensity of Golden Rod and purple fall asters. I was contemplating the beauty when I captured a brief statement from the radio announcer that a small plane had flown into the WTC and that was it. Next song was rock n roll as usual. I pulled into the farm. The farmer, a bachelor about 55 years old, literally staggered from the door. Highly unusual - he was a man of few words, with impeccable handwriting and meticulous records, always waiting for my arrival in a barn alley with fresh limestone, so clean you'd be willing to place a card table there and have breakfast together. From the truck, I could see the barn had not been cleaned, and the cows were shifting in their tie-stalls anxiously and loudly, impatient to get out to eat the fall fresh growth on the pasture. He staggered out, waving his hand in a "no! no! no!" manner. I was alarmed. This producer knew me well; something was amiss. I thought he was very sick. He was. He was out of breath as he reached the truck window. "NO HERD CHECK!" "Jerry? You ok?" He said, "Haven't you heard?! We're under attack! Go home!" and he staggered back to the house. Not another word.

Not liking the rock n roll song that had come on the radio, I had turned it off to enjoy the morning in peace. We all know the rest.

May these victims, their families and all those brave, brave hearts who rushed TO the danger, not away from it, be forever preserved in our hearts and memories. The day changed us all forever.
distinguished member(6265)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/11/2019 09:38AM
I was walking to school when a man came out of a store, saying the first tower had been hit and this would trigger a security state (Say, hey, NSA.). He was prescient.

When I reached school, they had a television in the atrium and we all watched the plane strike the second tower. I spent the morning trying to convince the administration to evacuate the school, which they eventually did. The next few days, AWACs did figure eights overhead and fighter jets streaked across the sky, but there were no other planes. People were so lost and afraid that I had several say I was an angel for simply helping them as I always helped strangers. I've never had anyone call me an angel before or after that week. For weeks, people would list the friends and family they'd lost in the Towers.
Savage Voyageur
distinguished member(12943)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished membermaster membermaster member
09/11/2019 09:53AM
inspector13: "
The COO of the company I was working for lead the rebellion on flight 93. For the rest of us it was pretty much business as usual.


“Lets Roll”.
distinguished member(960)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 10:23AM
I had the opportunity to see the September 11th Memorial this year and it is beyond words the emotion that is there.
distinguished member (236)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 12:55PM
inspector13: "
The COO of the company I was working for lead the rebellion on flight 93. For the rest of us it was pretty much business as usual.


Thank you for sharing the link. I was not aware of any of the details and always assumed that it was a spur of the moment heroic act.

My story is not so special. I was working in a building that had 5000 employees and just scurrying around when I noticed the TV video being shown on a large screen in one of the conference rooms. Even then it took a while to realize that something was going on since the conference room was still mostly empty and people had just started to become curious. Shortly after the corporate direction was to send people home that day and I'll always remember that one young woman got extremely angry and emotional with me and asked WHY people were being sent home.
distinguished member(3919)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 01:32PM

As far as I know, only our plant manager had personally met Tom. We were just a small subsidiary of Thoratec with our own human resources department, so we didn’t even know who was involved for a couple days. Even though we all continued working that day, the atmosphere was quite somber.

distinguished member (267)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 06:17PM
I was at work when the attack occurred. We had a TV set up and that was about all we did that day was watch it. I took my 13 year old son up for his first trip on the Friday following 9/11. It was a trip we had planned for awhile and took him out of school for a week. We put in at Brule for a loop trip north and west. I remember on day 2 as we were on a portage a middle age couple, man and woman were going the other way. The lady's first words to me were "are we bombing anyone yet?". I told her not that I knew. The few people coming out that we saw as we were going in knew about it and were wanting more information. We did a 7 day trip and as we exited it was me asking questions about what was going on. A co-worker had gone up a week before me, a few days prior to 9/11. She said her group had a small radio and could get spotty reception at night. She said they knew something big was happening but they didn't know what.
We will never forget.
09/11/2019 06:25PM
My dad's 9/11 story. He and his lady friend were in DC and that morning were on the National Mall waiting outside a museum not yet open. Being an old guy (79 at that time, now 97) he needed to use the restroom. So he asked a museum guard if he could do so. When he came out of the restroom everyone appeared to be panicking. The guards were telling everyone to leave and get away from government buildings. He asked a police officer what was happening and was told the country was under attack. As they were leaving the area they heard a loud boom to the south and saw a plume of smoke. Sometime later they learned that was the Pentagon being struck by a airliner. They were in DC for a week long Elderhostel program. They had driven there from Wisconsin but many of the other program participants had flown to DC and were struck there when civilian aviation was grounded.

My story: I was at work and a coworker who was at home called and told me to turn on the conference room tv because an airplane had stuck one of WTC towers. As we watched a live broadcast we saw the second tower struck. My first thought (not too patriotic) was to fill up my gas tank since I figured the oil companies would immediately raise oil prices.
distinguished member (441)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/11/2019 09:42PM
I an an eye surgeon. Tuesday Sept 11, 2001 was a surgery day. I finished my first case and went into the pre op room to greet the next patient. On the TV was a view of the first tower with report that a plane had hit it. My thought was that a air traffic controller was in big trouble. After my second case, the second plane hit, then we all knew it was no accident.
distinguished member(6265)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/12/2019 08:16AM
"The guards were telling everyone to leave and get away from government buildings." - That was smart.
distinguished member(719)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/12/2019 02:54PM
In 1996 we returned home to the news that the Olympic Games in Atlanta had been bombed

In 2002 I had just made it home and was unpacking gear when my wife runs in the house yelling something about all of the miners being found alive. My first thought was that some under-age drinkers had somehow gotten in trouble or went missing and worried their parents sick. I asked, "What minors?" This was the Quecreek Mine rescue in Pennsylvania. She looked at me right then and realized that I knew nothing of this that had dominated national news for days, and that even after her explanation, while I could appreciate that endangered people were now safe, this meant way less to me since I had not been caught up in all of the drama of their situation.

In 2016 I took a Labor Day weekend trip and the first day back at work there was some vague conversation in the lunch room referencing the Jacob Wetterling case--a local kidnapping that had gone unsolved for decades. I offered that even though the chances were slim, how wonderful it would be for him to be found safe and sound some day. At that point everyone looked at me like I was from a different planet. While I was gone, the case had been finally solved with his murderer confessing and Jacob's body found. I was asked if I had been under some kind of a rock. No, but I had been gone to the BWCA had not listened to the radio on the way home, got back late and went to work right away the next morning not having heard anything about this.

These are not in any way the same magnitude of 9/11 but speak to Quetico Mike's OP that when you are away in the BWCA/Quetico "WWlll" could start and one wouldn't know until you returned to civilization.

My wife was acquainted with Tom Burnett when he attended St. John's University and she was at the sister school, College of St. Benedict. In 2011 we were touring the U.S. Capitol building and came upon the mounted plaque that honors victims of Flight 93, including Tom Burnett, whose actions likely saved the capitol building from destruction. We did not expect to encounter this and seeing his name and having Burnett so honored in our Capitol building caught us off guard, moving us to tears. Tears again as I type this!
distinguished member(2109)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/12/2019 09:54PM
I was 5, but I still remember it like it was yesterday. Dad was supposed to fly up to Minnesota to join us on vacation, but with the planes grounded, he couldn't come. Mom came in to the guest bedroom (coincidentally, my bedroom now now that I live with my grandparents) and said that Daddy wouldn't be coming today. She didn't let me watch the television.
distinguished member (234)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/12/2019 11:34PM
Gosh, I have to share mine. What a horrible day. And, what a gorgeous day it had been! Blue sky, no clouds. Everyone was talking about what a perfect day it was. I was at a large, health care conference. Phones started ringing in our large group session-I didn't believe what people were saying. A friend called me and told to get out of the city I was in, while I could (Turned out to be unfounded, but no one really knew what to expect). Strangely, the people I rode with wanted to stay at the conference (!?) The conference organizer announced that terrorists had attacked NYC and urged us to stay and continue our work, not letting terrorists deter us. That still seems so weird to me. I was thanks, dude.

I left the conference immediately in search of a TV. Walking down the street of the city, I see people going in and out of a huge, old Catholic church crying. I felt the hair on the back of my neck stand up. As they left the church, I heard a lady tell another lady that she was afraid "they" were going to attack the city I was in. It felt like the world was frozen in time for me. (Meanwhile my two small children were 30 miles away, which seemed like 3000 miles away in that moment. I'll never forget that feeling of helplessness.)

I ran to a hotel bar/restaurant (where I knew there would be a TV) that was PACKED with people. I will never forget all the TV screens in various stages of the horror, trying to comprehend...strangers holding each other. I kept saying repeatedly, "Is that New York?" for some reason to no particular person-more out loud but to myself. Seared into my memory is a very sweet lady leaning over to me, taking my hands in hers, crying, saying "Yes, honey, that is New York!" New people would walk in and have to go through the same processing.

I honestly don't remember how I got home. I just remember being in that restaurant with all those people. I held so many people and had so many people help me out and I never saw them again. In that moment, we were so close.

Kudos to the heroes on that plane. I was very inspired by them and still am.
distinguished member (108)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/13/2019 08:27AM
I was in college, woke up, and checked, as I did every AM. I remember the picture of the hole in the side of the tower, which gave no scale. If I remember correctly, the Strib said/implied something that made me think it was was a small/personal aircraft.

My story of that morning is much like anyone else's from that point.

One quick thought....In 2015 I was at a hotel pool in Honolulu, swimming and having fun with tons of Japanese tourists, some of the them old enough to remember WW2, near Pearl Harbor. It was beautiful, peaceful, respectful and enjoyable. I helped an older Japanese man who's key had sunk down in the pool. Oddly, this experience was some kind of critique of 9/11 and all that surrounds that tragedy. Everything can change......
distinguished member(9125)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished memberpower member
09/14/2019 08:43AM
The morning of 9/11, I had taken an early American airlines flight from Minneapolis to Dallas fort Worth. This was a business trip and about the time the New York towers were being hit, I picked up my rental car and was headed to a training session. I enjoy listening to radio stations in Spanish and that was on the radio when I picked up a couple words about an airplane and a terrorist but I thought for sure that was in some Faraway place in the world.

Arriving at the professional building where my training was held, there was a crowd of people around a TV in the lobby and I was able to see a little about what had happened.

At that time, I did not own a cell phone. I proceeded to the classroom and was able to use the internet to get the full story. Now I had other things to worry about because my sister was a flight attendant. The instructor for the class had tried to continue on as best as possible, but I excused myself and went to find a phone. I spent some time confirming to my family that I had landed just fine in Texas. I found out from my mother that my sister was working and en route to Newark from London. Eventually we would learn that her plane was diverted and grounded in Greenland. I am pretty sure they were there for quite a few days.

My Alaskan brother-in-law was also traveling for business and had been grounded somewhere near Seattle.

A series of crazy phone calls throughout that day using an old-fashioned phone card to pay for them helped my extended family eventually confirm that everyone was somehow safe and accounted for.

My rental car had had something wrong with it and I phoned the agency to see about swapping it for one without a strange noise coming from the engine. The rental car company told me that every car in the Dallas-Fort Worth airport was spoken for. Somehow, they dug up another car and brought it to me later that day in exchange for the one with the strange noise.

Information was trickling in as the class attempted to proceed that week. Eventually we gave up on learning anything, the week-long class was cut short, and I opted to jump back in the rental car and head for Minnesota. Rental agencies had waived any drop-off fees for people going one way instead of flying.

When I got home, my spouse handed me a brand new flip cell phone. I was the Penny pincher of the two of us but I was told this was non-negotiable after the panic of 9/11 when there was no easy way to reach me and every air flight was potentially a weapon of war.

I had two very small children at the time. This week I was explaining to the 3rd child who had not yet been born how that day changed the world.

distinguished member (211)distinguished memberdistinguished memberdistinguished member
09/14/2019 09:54AM
I was at work on 9/11. As a manager I was put in the uncomfortable position of having to tell everyone to get back to work after lunch, after they had watched the towers fall on TV.

I had a fall BWCA trip planned 2 weeks later, to Howard/Peter/Gabby, in the heart of the blowdown area. We knew when we planned the trip that we were going into a devastated area. After 9/11 happened we considered changing our destination so we would not be among the carnage of the blowdown, but we stuck with our plan. We enjoyed the trip and had awesome fall weather. The area around Howard was pure blowdown. It was odd being in the BWCA and not seeing jets flying overhead at 30k feet.
member (30)member
09/22/2019 11:38PM
One of the well known investment firms was a major client of the company I worked for and had offices in the WTC. I was part of a team that was just finishing a job at 1 Liberty Plaza. Not in the towers but part of the WTC complex. I flew home on 9/6 as I had taken the following week off for a BWCA trip. The night before I flew out I went up to the observation deck to take in the view as I would not be back for some time as I was set to work on a large local project here in Minneapolis after I returned from my trip. The rest of the guys stayed and worked at other locations nearby for the client and one co-worker was on the observation deck the evening of 9/10. We did not lose anyone as they were off site but still nearby so they had ringside seats to the whole event. By 9/11 we were already 3 days into our trip and then a day later I remember commenting about the fact that we had not heard any commercial jets overhead at night as we often did. We didn't give it any more thought. We learned about the attack as we made our way out on 9/15 from a party that was coming in.
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