Twenty years ago, at around 9.10am, I was sitting at my desk in Toronto, preparing documents for my boss to take to Court that morning, when one of the lawyers came running down the hall and asking any of us assistants to see if we could pull up CNN as there was something happening in New York City. While we all quickly tried getting on the site, only one of us managed to get it opened. With awe and disbelief, we watched the first tower smoking, after that first plane hit.
In a very short time, a boardroom with a TV was opened for anyone to come in and watch, and as we stood there, a group of assistants and lawyers became silent as we watched the 2nd plane fly directly into the second tower on this fateful September morning. There was an announcement shortly after that, due to us being in the financial district of Toronto and uncertain of what was going on, we could go home early and await the news about work the next day.
As I took the GO train back to Hamilton to my apartment, where I was all by myself, I called my kids to make sure they were okay, and then my parents to let them know I was okay. And then I watched. For hours. CNN was the only channel I watched that day. I watched, horrified and crying, while thinking of those innocent people who lost their lives that morning in such a horrific way.
Today, let’s remember those who fought to save the people in the towers. Let’s remember the families who waited for any news on their loved ones. Let’s remember the amazing people of Newfoundland who took in those strangers on airplanes and let them into their homes and towns, to make them feel a bit safer at such a tumultuous time in their lives. For today, let’s not talk about the pandemic, or politics, and let’s just remember all the lives lost, and saved, that fateful September day.