When It Happened

 

By Aubrey Murtha –  I remember when it happened.

American Airlines (AA) pilot Captain (CAPT) James C. Condes, shows his son Christopher, the inscribed pilot's name of the ill fated flight 77, CAPT Charles Burlingame, prior to a memorial service at Arlington National Cemetery for the 184 victims of the September 11th, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon.

American Airlines (AA) pilot Captain (CAPT) James C. Condes, shows his son Christopher, the inscribed pilot’s name of the ill fated flight 77, CAPT Charles Burlingame, prior to a memorial service at Arlington National Cemetery for the 184 victims of the September 11th, 2001, terrorist attack on the Pentagon.

 

I was in the first grade. My teacher knew that my dad was an airline pilot for United—one of the airlines involved in the incident—so we did not discuss it in class. Instead, I heard the older kids talking in hushed tones in the hallway, and I was left confused and unaware.

I walked home after school, and I found my mom sitting on the couch, tears in her eyes as she nervously watched the media coverage on T.V. and awaited a phone call from my dad, a call to assure us that his aircraft was not one of the hijacked planes. He called, thank God, and as she sobbed, I watched the footage of a plane crashing into a very tall building. I saw lots of people on the T.V. crying and lots of pictures of the American flag and lots of brave looking men and women in uniforms heading toward the flames.

I remember it all like it took place this morning. School children are impressionable. It is wild how some things can stay so fresh in your mind, memories as clear and crisp as that morning in early autumn 14 years ago.

Never forget.

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