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My 911

I Wasn't There But Some Great Friends Nearly Were

By Mike Singleton - MikeydredPublished 3 years ago 3 min read
13
For The Fallen Heroes

Around September the 10th 2001 I was flying over the East coast of the USA to touch down in Mexico for a two week holiday. I was working for a company called SSS who provided IT support for Morgan Stanley who had a big presence in the World Trade Centre. My mate Jim was flying over for a work and holiday week in New York with some other SSS guys.

On September 11th we were in a hotel in a Mexican jungle and they had TV and news was coming about jets hitting and demolishing the World Trade Centre in New York City. My first thought was tha there were a lot of Hollywood directors thinking they wish they had thought of that (incredibly insensitive and crass I know) and then the absolute horror of everything that had happened , and my thought was “My god Jim and the lads are in there”.

I saw programs afterwards about what happened and was shocked at the basic construction that had girders supporting the floors bolted to rather than built into the walls so when the jets hit , the fuel , fire and weight caused the buildings to fold like a pack of cards.

There was no way that Jim would get out of this.

This was 2001 so the internet was there but be had basic chat apps , email , but no Facebook or social media so to speak. Phone calls wer exorbitant , but I managed to find a computer and emailed work for news.

Nothing

Nothing

Nothing.

It turned out the work server had been hit by a virus so no emails were getting in or out.

By Saturday I finally got in touch either by phone or mail with my manager Dave , who told me that no one from SSS was in the building when the planes hit. I had been very worried all week watching the news , hearing the heroics of the rescue service and somebody continually going on about A Rock on the news channels. Eventually , amid adverts for a classical CD collection which is really great even if you can’t understand the words, I realised they were talking about Iraq.

The holiday was one to remember but eventually we were coming home but in check in I had some batteries for my portable CD player. T was told I would need to put them in my luggage (which had already gone) so told the guy to bin them or keep them himself , but he was insistent I retain them , but eventually he just took them from me, and we were on our way back over the Atlantic Ocean to Manchester then by train back to Newcastle.

When I got back to work, I met up with Jim and he told us what happened. They came out of where they were staying across the river from the World Trade Centre and one of the lads said to Jim “That’s where we are going” pointing at the World Trade Centre just as the first jet hit. They saw it happen. Luckily for them they had not set off but it was an incredible shock, to realise if the planes had been half an hour later then I would have probably been mourning my friends.

There may be lots of similar stories survivors could tell but the horror of being on one of the jets or buildings when this happened cannot be understated.

I always include a song with my writing and the only one I can thing of that may be anywhere near appropriate is “My City Of Ruins” by The Boss , Bruce Springsteen. While there are lots of heroes who protect us on a daily basis , every so often the bad guys strike.

Friendship
13

About the Creator

Mike Singleton - Mikeydred

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  • Joe Patterson2 years ago

    Great story, I can relate to this story on so many levels, btw "The Rising" album from Bruce Springsteen is some of my favorite music dedicated to 9/11.

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