Now and then an event is so powerful that every detail becomes permanently etched into the minds of the people who experienced it, and every generation to come will be told the story. One such moment began on the quiet morning of September 11, 2001.
People across the United States woke up that morning and heard the terrifying news about commercial airliners being hijacked. Four planes were taken over by Al-Qaeda terrorists: American Airlines Flight 11, United Airlines Flight 175, American Airlines Flight 77 and United Airlines Flight 93. Although no one knew the hijackers’ demands, it wouldn’t be long until the devastating truth behind their mission was revealed.
At 8:48am, American Airlines Flight 11 was flown directly into the north tower of the World Trade Center. Less than twenty minutes later, United Airlines Flight 175 struck the south tower. The ferocity of the impacts produced tremendous explosions and weakened the buildings so thoroughly that they both collapsed less than two hours after being hit.
By 9:43am the terrorists had struck again, and this time their target was the Pentagon. American Airlines Flight 77 crashed into the building and demolished one of its five sides. The world watched on, terrified at what had happened and what may yet be to come. The White House was evacuated, all flights were cancelled and people across the world stopped whatever they were doing to witness these events unfold.
A final plane remained under the terrorist’s control – United Airlines Flight 93. No one was sure what their target was, but there was much speculation that the plane was either being taken towards the White House or Camp David. The passengers of this flight heard about the fate of the other planes, and all of the innocent people who were killed in that morning’s tragedies. They decided to take a stand.
Some of the passengers of United Airlines Flight 93 called loved ones and told them that their plane had been hijacked. They said tearful goodbyes and told family members that they loved them. When the time came, the brave victims fought back. They attacked the terrorists who held them captive, and struggled for control of the plane.
Flight 93 crashed into a field in Pennsylvania. There were no survivors, but the bold actions of the passengers helped prevent further destruction and loss of life. They will forever be mourned and honored as heroes.
Immediately, people who were near the attack sites sprang into action. Firefighters rushed into buildings to put out the flames and bring people safely outside. Rescue workers sorted through debris for days in the hopes of finding survivors. People all over the nation stood in line for hours to donate blood for the victims who were injured that morning. In the wake of the worst attack on American soil, the country banded together to help each other and grieve over our losses.
On December 18th, 2001, an amendment was made to the United States Code to memorialize September 11 as Patriot Day. The proclamation called for all local governments to recognize the day, flags to be flown at half-staff and the people of America to observe a moment of silence for the nearly 3,000 people who lost their lives that morning.
September 11th is a day that will never be forgotten. We will remember it for the tragedies we witnessed, the devastating loss of innocent lives and the way it united an entire country. People everywhere felt a renewed sense of pride and patriotism for their homeland, and they were reminded about the importance of friends and family who so deeply enrich our lives.
At PeopleFinders we are dedicated to helping people find each other and stay connected through both good times and bad. On Patriot Day we share in the moment of silence for those who died or lost loved ones on September 11, 2001, and we honor the spirit of the people who came together after the attack to become even stronger. We will protect our land more diligently, we will guard over each other more cautiously and we will always remember. Thank you for reading the PeopleFinders People Search blog.
Tags: 2001, American Airlines Flight 11, American Airlines Flight 77, Heroes, Hijacked, Patriot Day, Pentagon, September 11, Terrorists, United Airlines Flight 175, United Airlines Flight 93, White House, World Trade Center