- Politics and Social Issues»
Remembering the World Trade Towers and 9/11
The Twin Towers
Those Beautiful World Trade Towers
They stood majestic and tall high above the skyline of Manhattan. So tall were they, it seemed as though, these amazon skyscrapers were stretching and reaching towards the sun.The solar reflection made these buildings glisten and twinkle by day. At night the lights seen through the windows were like a beacon that denoted the Wall Street area and and financial district of Manhattan.
As the tallest buildings in this metropolitan city, these structures would became a favored symbol of all that New York City embodies. They could be seen from almost any vantage point. Near and far, from 20 miles away in the suburbs to across the river in the next state, and from the air, the World Trade Towers were a significant landmark. Everyone was compelled to look at the Twin Towers and comment “there they are”, no matter how many times one had seen them before.
The Twin Towers Were Landmarks of Lower Manhattan
The Twin Towers Were Amazing to See
They were architectural wonders with a beauty that was scintillating to the sense of sight. From far away, their statuesque profile stood quietly confident and proud, as if they were painted on the horizon. From inside, views of the surrounding areas were spectacular. Up close, The World Trade Towers and all the buildings around them, were alive with the hustle and bustle, the comings and goings and the busyness that New York City is known for.
Men and women in business suits dominated the area, but others dressed in many different clothes, people young and old, tourists and New Yorkers by the thousands would walk in and out and by these buildings on a daily basis, with no one ever believing they would fall one day.
Watch the Construction of the Original World Trade Centers
World Trade Towers
The Day the Towers Fell
On Sept 11, 2001 the towers fell, downed by 2 airplanes piloted by terrorists that strategically hit the buildings, and causing them to fall. Never again would they stand tall against the backdrop of lower Manhattan. That day, those in the hijacked planes, people in the twin towers, New York City Firefighters, NYPD Police Officers, and emergency personnel, in addition to people at the Penagon in Washington D.C. and people on the doomed airline that crashed in Pennsylvania, became victims of what is now known as 9/11. Rescuers from miles away responded to the events as they were happening in Manhattan.
All That Was Left
From my suburban town, 20 miles away, I saw our volunteer fireman with sirens wailing, racing through the local streets, knowing they were headed toward Manhattan in a vain attempt to help find survivors. Approximately 3,000 people never got to go home that day. Sept 11 is not over for us New Yorkers.
Everyday, more people get sick develop rare cancers, lung diseases and other illnesses as a result of the toxic air they were exposed to that day and from working in the area from the aftermath of Sept 11. I know many who lost their loved ones that day. I lost a friend who developed a quick spreading cancer as a result of running from the dust ball debris that was rolling down the street after Tower 2 fell. I know countless people who lost husbands, wives, sons, daughters, siblings and friends that day. Many were firefighter husbands, sons and fathers, some were police officers, some were paramedics, some were executives and office workers, and employees of companies that occupied the building. Some were there for a convention that was going on that particular day.
Every Year On the Anniversary of 9/11 the Bright Lights Can Be Seen from Miles Away
Ground Zero will Be a Memorial
And there are others who lost their lives from working in the toxic air in recovery efforts. So many lives will never be the same. I have friends who still suffer from post traumatic stress even as we near a decade in time since this occurrence. Streets have been renamed for the rescuers who perished that day. Memorials exist in every town to remember the fallen. High Schools and Universities have built tributes to their graduates who never lived out their lives. Ground Zero, the area named where the World Trade Buildings once stood is first now being reconstructed as a memorial to all the victims of 9/11.
By the 10th anniversary, most of the memorial will be ready for visitors. By the 11th anniversary, a museum will be open to the public. The memorial is important for people to remember what happened that terrible day. With the demise of Bin Laden, another chapter is written, people call it closure. It is justice. Closure means things can be settled, a conclusion can be made and there is a finality to all this. For all the people affected by these terrorist acts, justice helps, but there is no finality. People just try to go on.
Ground Zero is the Location of Where The World Trade Towers Once Stood
There Will Never Be Closure
No matter where you live in the world, this is not closure. Terrorism continues to be a threat to us all. Husbands, wives, children, parents, brothers, sisters friends, peers and others live their lives everyday, empty and cheated of the people who they lost that day. And for the people who ran for their lives on 9/11 and survived, they live with the memories of a war like atmosphere they bore witness to. There will never be closure. For the rest of us New Yorkers, who remember those majestic towers, the image of those buildings, the memories of the people we knew, of the stories we hear from the people we meet, of the friends we continue to comfort, this is not closure.
When I drive down a street and suddenly see a bronze or stone statue unassumingly sitting in tribute, I know from a distance it is a memorial to 9/11 victims. Often I am compelled to stop, look and read the names. It is the least I can do. When I turn a corner and the I see the red street signs for fallen firefighters, I remember those who bravely gave their lives.
The local news still reports about people who succumbed to illnesses they acquired shortly after Sept 11. Those stricken with illnesses are fighting to get help with their medical expenses. Some with PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) are able to put their lives back together, even though they don’t sleep well. Some can’t go back to Lower Manhattan. Some will never be the same. Sept 11 is not over for us New Yorkers. Many of these victims will never be included in a memorial. There will never be closure.
New Yorkers Are Still Impacted By 9/11 and Will Be for Many More Years
I was little when the World Trade Center was first constructed. My only recollections of the Manhattan skyline always had included the Twin Towers. We can all recall the day they fell. For me, I think back and remember my friends. I can still see the Twin Towers standing tall in my memory. I feel for all who were directly impacted by the events of September 11, 2001. I never know who I am going to meet who will tell me about who they knew and lost on that day or how their life has changed forever. In the years since 9/11 people continue to be affected, more than the media shows, more than it appears from the construction of the memorial being built, more than written words can say.