World Trade Center Site New York and September 11th
September 12th 2011 World Trade Center Memorial Opens, New York braces through terrorist threats
Ten years ago a hole was carved in the New York skyline as two planes flew into the World Trade Center. As a New Yorker typing this on the tenth anniversary of the World Trade Center tragedy, September 11th 2001 burns an image inside of my mind.
My weekend began on Friday by leaving New York city to travel up to work all the way upstate, where I sit typing about the World Trade Center tenth anniversary now. September 11thmeans something different to everyone. There are those who lived through it, those who lost loved ones because of it and others who live in fear and distrust of our government because of it. Personally I have met each one of those individuals and have fought my own inner fears as well.
Driving up to work by the Canadian border this weekend questions swirled within my head. There was a lady on the LIRR train on Friday morning speaking of her experience during the attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11th, 2001. I never got her name, instead I just sat and listened, captivated along with everyone else on the train traveling from Ronkonkoma to Penn Station. Over the course of a half an hour she painted the picture from a Long Island commuter standpoint. Roughly a half an hour outside of Penn Station on the morning of September 11th, 2001 the woman said a man next to her turned and informed her that a plane had flown into one of the World Trade Center buildings. Her response to him was, I thought as everyone else did, how could a plane not see the World Trade Center building?
Next she relived the horrific side, the realization that America was under a terrorist attack, as she said the man turned to her once again after receiving a text on his phone, saying that a second plane had taken out the remaining World Trade Center building. As the woman went on to describe how she entered into Penn Station and stood there, wondering if she should catch the next train to Long Beach or attempt her fate in NYC, I sat there thinking I would have run back to Long Island. Now as I sit typing the experience of the two planes flying into the World Trade Center buildings, I think of another story I heard later that same day.
Every morning I have the pleasure of riding the train with real people. I use the word real because the construction workers, the blue collared individuals of America are the ones responsible for building and resurrecting the freedom towers, however many, including myself may not know this story.
During a ten-hour road trip to my work destination for this week, my fellow co-worker described his experience on September 11th, 2001. My coworker during the World Trade Center tragedy was working over around the Hearst Building and his vivid description burned an image in my mind that shall never leave, that I wish to share with those of you who read this. After the World Trade Center buildings fell, he said that the people exiting the city were like zombies, drifting up from lower Manhattan, empty, disoriented and lost. While most of Manhattan was emptying, the local iron workers that were assigned to the buildings around him that day, picked up their tools, put on their hard hats and headed down to the World Trade Center to see what they could do.
My father watched from a building across the river; as many construction guys did, as black smoke and white ash clouds would filled the void have where the World Trade Center once stood.
September 11th 2011, ten years later I find myself standing on a dock, a flag before me being raised to half-mast, as another is folded with care and respect, neither of the two ever falling. That is exactly what America is proving, despite the pain that the World Trade Center tragedy has caused, we shall never fall.
Firefighters and police braced themselves this weekend for a potential attack, but this time we are ready. President Obama went on many of the major news networks to promise us that America has never been safer, even on the tenth anniversary weekend of the World Trade Center attacks.
Ten years later, that much smarter, we all must remember the saying of see something say something. Exiting the city on Friday my coworker and I made a comment on the skyline, hoping it was still in one piece when we returned. It is sad that we have to even think like that, however I find myself more concerned with the individuals who crave stardom, not terrorist attacks. Homeland security and their department do whatever is in their power and they do it well, however some people you just never know what they are capable of doing.
The Telegraph posted an article headlining it with President Barack Obama has said the post-September 11 decade had proven that despite divisions, wars and recession, nothing could shatter the will of America if it remained united.
Also President Obama reminded America that we have overcome the trials and tribulations of a Civil War, slavery, fascism, recessions and riots. Terrorism is next and we will triumph.
Terrorists tried to embed fear into the hearts of New Yorkers and Americans this weekend as the media released information that three individuals had flown into America in mid-August to carry out a terrorist plot during the World Trade Center Memorial opening weekend. Information was held as viable due to the fact that plots against the homeland don’t come in everyday as Americans would think, according to Reuters. In fact precautions were taken to ensure that the threat did not become reality the way that the first attack on the World Trade Center buildings did ten years prior. New York City and Washington DC were listed as areas of interest for the terrorist car bomb plot and the information was released through the media to put into force America’s greatest weapon; its citizens. Received on Wednesday or Thursday, officials wasted no time in relaying the threat out to the public and putting the phrase, “if you see something, say something” into play.
On September 12th, 2011 in downtown Manhattan, New Yorkers opened their windows to let the sunshine back in, as the World Trade Center Memorial was formally declared open to the public.
For some the World Trade Center memorial serves as a final resting place for the souls that were lost ten years ago to call home. Monica Iken can now have a place to visit her husband, Michael Iken, who she lost ten years ago in the September 11th attacks.
The World Trade Center Memorial resurrects freedom, love and meaning as water flows over etched names into dark granite pools below. Why pools of water? Well if you ask me I believe it is because water acts as a symbol of life, while moving water enforces the words that President Obama spoke, nothing shall shatter the will of America for we will remain united and only become stronger as time heals us all.
Despite the fear, pain and anguish that still linger from the 2001 World Trade Center attacks, the tenth anniversary is a giant step for the American people as we move on and stand together against terrorism. Terrorists attacked the World Trade Center buildings because they were symbols of power and economic force in America, however as Americans we can attack Terrorism by showing that you may be able to push us down, but we always stand right back up. Knocking down the buildings of the World Trade Center did not defeat New York and ten years later we haven proven that freedom shall ring.