It was a few minutes before 9 am. I was sleeping in my single bed in my shoebox of a dorm room.
Suddenly, one of my hallmates comes banging on my door saying “They just bombed the Twin Towers in New York!”
I jump out of bed, grab my glasses and join my friends huddled around the 19″ TV in our RA’s room.
I was just starting to wake up enough to grasp what I was seeing when we watched – all of us frozen in place – the 2nd plane hit the 2nd tower! No one talked. We just watched and huddled closer together as the room filled with more people as the news spread through the dorm.
Then the news came about the Pentagon. Was it possible for us to feel anymore lost in our own skin as we already did?
It was like time had stopped. I don’t remember what classes I had that day, or if I even went to them. It seemed like we sat there together for hours, watching and waiting on someone to tell us “that’s the end, it’s all over, the clean up will now commence.”
I’m sure somewhere in there we ate and showered.
I remember the news of the 4th plane in the air and no one knew what it’s target was. I remember thinking about family members that lived in Virginia and that there was a very popular Navy base there. Then the news of the civilian heroes on that flight that took down the hijackers.
Oh, i forgot to tell you that I was a freshman at North Georgia College & State University – an Army ROTC school. And just in the month that I had been a student there, the Army and it’s traditions were becoming valuable to us civilian girls who got to stay on campus. It made us feel safe. It made us feel respected. It made us feel appreciative.
And in the next 5 days, we began to feel more appreciative than we ever had before. The next 5 days were filled with Black Hawk choppers landing on our campus, and our friends and classmates being called off to this new war.
I remember sitting with friends, watching out our 4th story window, as the birds landed, the boys loaded, and they flew away – in the daytime and in the cover of darkness – never knowing who would return.
That’s where I was. Where were you?