September 11, 2001:
Reflections of the past
Location: New York City; Arlington County,
Virginia; and near Shanksville,
Date: Tuesday, September 11, 2001
8:46 am - 10:28 am (UTC-4)
Attack type: Aircraft hijacking, Mass murder,
Death(s): 3,017 (including 24 presumed dead and 19
Perpetrator(s): Al-Qaeda led by Osama bin Laden,
* New York City
WTC: 2,604 died and another 24 remain listed as missing
American 11: 87 died
United 175: 59 died
American 77: 59
United 93: 40
Total 2,974 died and another 24 remain
listed as missing.
The 10-storey high sculpture given to the US by Russian
President Vladimir Putin, the people of Russia and the artist,
Russian sculptor Zurab Tsereteli, to the people of the United
Firemen hoisting the National Flag of America
The second plane making its way to crash in the second twin
It was just another day in New York City, with the streets filled
with hundreds of people walking here and there doing their day to day
chores. Little did they suspect that on this particular day things will
never be the same for many people no matter what they try to do to get
on with their lives in the 'normal' way!
The September 11 attacks (often referred to as September 11th or
9/11) were a series of coordinated suicide attacks by Al-Qaeda upon the
United States on September 11, 2001.
Early in the morning on September 11, 2001, nineteen hijackers took
control of four commercial airliners en route to San Francisco and Los
Angeles from Boston, Newark, and Washington, D.C. (Washington Dulles
International Airport). At 8:46a.m., American Airlines Flight 11 was
crashed into the World Trade Center's North Tower, followed by United
Airlines Flight 175 which hit the South Tower at 9:03 a.m.
Another group of hijackers flew American Airlines Flight 77 into the
Pentagon at 9:37 a.m. A fourth flight, United Airlines Flight 93, whose
ultimate target was thought to be either the United States Capitol or
White House, crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 a.m, after
the passengers on board engaged in a fight with the hijackers.
On United Airlines Flight 93, black box recordings revealed that crew
and passengers attempted to seize control of the plane from the
hijackers after learning through phone calls that similarly hijacked
planes had been crashed into buildings that morning.
There were a total of 2,993 deaths, including the 19 hijackers: 246
on the four planes (from which there were no survivors), 2,603 in New
York City in the towers and on the ground, and 125 at the Pentagon. An
additional 24 people remain listed as missing. All of the deaths in the
attacks were civilians except for 55 military personnel killed at the
Pentagon. More than 90 countries lost citizens in the attacks on the
World Trade Center. In 2007, the New York City medical examiner's office
added Felicia Dunn-Jones to the official death toll from the September
11 attacks. Dunn-Jones died five months after 9/11 from a lung condition
which was linked to exposure to dust during the collapse of the World
The United States responded to the attacks by launching a 'War on
Terrorism', invading Afghanistan to depose the Taliban, who had
harboured Al-Qaeda terrorists, and enacting the USA PATRIOT Act. Many
other countries also strengthened their anti-terrorism legislation and
expanded law enforcement powers.
The damage to the Pentagon was cleared and repaired within a year,
and the Pentagon Memorial was built on the site. The rebuilding process
has started on the World Trade Center site. In 2006 a new office tower
was completed on the site of 7 World Trade Center. The 1 World Trade
Center is currently under construction at the site and at 1,776 ft (541
m) upon completion in 2011, will become one of the tallest buildings in
North America. Three more towers were originally expected to be built
between 2007 and 2012 on the site.
The Port Authority suggest that 14,154 people were typically in the
Twin Towers by 8:45 a.m. The vast majority of people below the impact
zone safely evacuated the buildings, along with 18 people who were in
the impact zone in the south tower. 1,366 people died who were at or
above the floors of impact in the North Tower. According to the
Commission Report, hundreds were killed instantly by the impact, while
the rest were trapped and died after the tower collapsed. As many as 600
people were killed instantly or were trapped at or above the floors of
impact in the South Tower.
At least 200 people jumped to their deaths from the burning towers
(as depicted in the photograph "The Falling Man"), landing on the
streets and rooftops of adjacent buildings hundreds of feet below.
Some of the occupants of each tower above its point of impact made
their way upward toward the roof in hope of helicopter rescue, but the
roof access doors were locked. No plan existed for helicopter rescues,
and on September 11, the thick smoke and intense heat would have
prevented helicopters from conducting rescues.
A total of 411 emergency workers who responded to the scene died as
they attempted to rescue people and fight fires. The New York City Fire
Department (FDNY) lost 341 firefighters and 2 FDNY paramedics. The New
York City Police Department lost 23 officers. The Port Authority Police
Department lost 37 officers, and 8 additional EMTs and paramedics from
private EMS units were killed.
A satellite view of the attack on the twin towers
What was left remaining of the twin towers when both collapsed
Weeks after the attack, the estimated death toll was over 6,000. The
city was only able to identify remains for about 1,600 of the victims at
the World Trade Center. The medical examiner's office also collected
"about 10,000 unidentified bone and tissue fragments that cannot be
matched to the list of the dead". Bone fragments were still being found
in 2006 as workers were preparing to demolish the damaged Deutsche Bank
The Port Authority is making progress on the $3.1 billion Freedom
Tower (1 World Trade Center). Located at the northwest corner of the WTC
site, installation of steel columns continues as the concrete is being
poured to form the tower's base.
The skyscraper is being built according to a revised design released
in June 2005. The new design retains essential elements of the original
plan, soaring 1,776 feet into the sky, its illuminated mast evoking the
Statue of Liberty's torch, but features a smaller, cubic base set back
further from West Street to protect the building against future attacks.
Rising from its square base, which will be constructed of impermeable
concrete and steel, the redesigned Freedom Tower will taper into eight
tall isosceles triangles, forming a perfect octagon at its center. An
observation deck will be located 1,362 feet above ground and there will
be a square glass parapet at 1,368 feet, the heights of the original
Twin Towers. From these, an illuminated spire containing a television
antenna will rise to a final height of 1,776 feet.
Frank P. Perrucci, Chairman of the September 11 Bayonne Remembers
Committee, has announced that plans are underway for the community's
seventh annual remembrance of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade
Center, the Pentagon, and United Airlines Flight 93 on September 11,
2001. The service will also honour the victims of the attack on the
World Trade Center on February 26, 1993. The event will take place on
Thursday, September 11, at 7:00 p.m., by the September 11 memorial at
Harbor View Park, at the eastern end of the Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor
(the former Military Ocean Terminal).
Rev. Robert Pachana of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church stated that the
program will include bagpipers; color guards from the Bayonne Police and
Fire Departments; the Veterans' Color Guard from the Bayonne Memorial
Day Parade Committee; the Bayonne High School Marching Band; trumpet
players; and Sweet Harmony, a choral group at Bayonne High School.
Several members of the Bayonne Interfaith Clergy will offer prayers,
readings, and reflections. The program will also include students from
the Bayonne public elementary schools and All Saints Catholic Academy.
Mayor Terrence Malloy will present brief remarks.
Perrucci stated that for members of the public who wish to attend the
September 11 program, there will be a shuttle bus that will pick up
passengers from West 23rd Street and Del Monte Drive (the location of
Catholic War Veterans Post #1612), beginning at 5:30 p.m. At the
conclusion of the program, the shuttle bus will transport passengers
back to 23rd Street. There are Parking Authority lots with metered
spaces in the vicinity of West 23rd Street and Del Monte Drive. There
are also on-street, metered parking spaces near the Parking Authority
lots. Participants who wish to drive directly to the ceremony can park
in designated areas at the Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor, beginning at
6:00 p.m. There are parking spaces located next to Harbor View Park.
Perrucci reminded the community that the September 11.Bayonne
Remembers Committee is still offering paving stones for placement in
Harbor View Park, the location of Bayonne's September 11 memorial. Many
visitors have found that Harbor View Park is a beautiful, peaceful space
in Bayonne's landscape.
Jerry and Dolores Kelly are coordinating the paving stone sales.
Jerry Kelly stated that each Brussels Block rectangular paving stone
measures eight inches by seven inches, with limestone coloring and black
lettering. The paving stone is coated with a water resilient layer, and
each paving stone costs fifty dollars.
Dolores Kelly said that many of the people who purchase the paving
blocks state that they continue to have lingering feelings of loss after
the tragedy of September 11, and this is a wonderful way of expressing
their feelings. Courtesy: Wikipedia