September 11th, 2001


As I reflect back on September 11th. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years. I was in New York City the week before and was actually flying my plane when the attacks occurred.

As complex as our Air Traffic Control system is it is very structured and most flights are generally routine. With some exceptions there are very few surprises for seasoned aviators. With that said Sept. 11th. was very different.

The first transmission I recall as being odd was an airliner saying something like “this is not good, something is going on”. My initial thought was that he was having some sort of emergency onboard his aircraft. After some more very unusual "chatter" it became apparent this was something much worse. A couple minutes later ATC instructed all pilots to remain quiet. Shortly thereafter I was instructed to land at the nearest suitable airport. It was only after I walked in the lobby and satrting watching TV did I have any idea what had just happened. My passenger just stared at the TV for what seemed like several minutes without as much as blinking. He eventually said “my brother works in the Pentagon”. Fortunately he was OK.

It was a day I’ll never forget!


Senior Member
I had gotten up late that morning, the TV was on and I was wondering what movie was on. They were talking about a plane hitting the tower and then second plane hit. At work a number of aircraft and they stayed with for nearly a month.

The thing I remember most was a week of looking up and seeing any aircraft flying. To me that is an eery sight.
I turned on the TV and was making coffee. The news was interrupted with a report of a small plane hitting the World Trade Center . I looked at the TV and thought " thats a Boeing, and Boeing don't make small planes. I ran up stairs and woke my brother in-law and and my wife and turned on the TV. My asked " what's going on ", and I said " we are being attached ". My brother in-law asked if this was real and I said " look hear comes a second plane ". After the second plane hit I looked at my 18 year old brother in-law and and said " pack your bags, you're going to war, you get to play in the big sand box ". I left for work, only behind the front seat was my Bushmaster M-4 with 120 rounds of ammunition and my 92S Benetta with 45 rounds of ammunition. On my way to work driving down Marine Drive I witnessed the last plane land at PDX.
My brother in-law joined the Navy and was a Corpsman in Iraq for a year attached to a Marine combat unit and seen action and plied his trade. He came back a different person and is now medically retired from the Navy 100% disabled with PTSD.
9-11 has been a hard day for me ever sense.
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