Every year on September 11th the entire country relives the tragedy that struck the United States. Every year I sit and watch. Every year I relive the same feelings of emptiness and helpless that I felt that day. Even now writing this, it conjures great emotion and sadness.
The disbelief that that a plane could hit the something like the World Trade Center. Watching live as a second plane hit the other tower. Knowing at that very moment that the first crash wasn't an accident. Then watching and hearing that there was another plane that crashed into the Pentagon. And in the confusion of all that, hearing that another plane had crashed that was intended to hit the White House.
Because of the time we lived in, all of this was caught in what was essentially real time and broadcast out to the world for better or worse. I watched the disbelief on every interviewees face. I watching people jump from the burning buildings on live TV. I watched Firemen, Police, and Port Authority people do their jobs and march towards the chaos that everyone else was rushing to get away from. I watched the first tower come down. Then I watched the second tower come down. I watched as every pedestrian was turned gray but the dust and debris of the towers. I watch as servicemen and women rushed to save others in the Pentagon. I watched for days on end.
In the years since the attack, there has been so much accumulation of personal video, newscasts, security cams, audio recordings, cell phone messages, etc. that shows close to a 360 degree panorama of what was going on that day during the crisis. It one sense it's really good that it provides clarity to how things really happened. It's also worse because it clarifies everything to know how this all happened.
This will probably be the single largest tragic event that I am witness to in my life and I wasn't even there. It is also the only event in my life that the memory doesn't fade thanks to the yearly broadcasts.