I’ll never forget where I was on the morning of Tuesday, September 11th, 2001. I jumped in the car for my three minute drive to work just in time to hear Warren Korff’s Information Update on 106.1 KISS-FM, a radio station in Evansville, Indiana that I was running at the time. Warren and I got along quite well, and I’ve always had a huge amount of respect for what he does. Towards the end of his newscast he mentioned that a plane that had collided with the World Trade Center, but that was pretty much it. That particular news update was very preliminary, updated just minutes before the second plane hit. But as events progressed and we found out more about what was going on in New York City, that story would become of the most devastating news stories that Mr. Korff would ever report.
I got to the station and prepared myself for a meeting in the conference room. When I walked in the TV was on CNN and there were many more people there than were supposed to be in the meeting. Everyone was still carrying on conversations and speculating about what had happened. No one knew that we were under attack, and no was expecting what we saw next. The second explosion is just as heartbreaking for me to see now as it was fifteen years ago. As it hit there was nothing but silence in that conference room except for five words that ring in my ears to this day. With a look of horror, shock and utter disbelief on his face, the station’s Operations Manager said, “Our world just changed forever.”
My kids never lived in an America that didn’t have a Department of Homeland Security, in fact my wife didn’t realize that it was just recently created 15 years following the 9/11 attacks.
Yesterday, I spent the day watching documentaries about the attacks. Some were old, some were brand new, and some were updated. I learned more about the attacks from the documentaries… about the people on Flight 93, about the order to shoot down the hijacked planes, about the difference between policies and procedures before and after the attacks. As I started weeping out of the blue, it occurred to me as I asked my wife, “Will it ever get easier to relive this?” It may have been fifteen years ago, but it feels like yesterday.
Has reliving what happened on 9/11 gotten any easier?