On September 11, 2001 I woke up to just another ordinary Tuesday as a busy mother, wife, and full-time ‘non-traditional’ college student. My mom came and picked up my two young girls to take them to school, and I jumped into my car and headed up to campus. At the corner of 700 East and 400 South I casually flipped on the radio, and the whole world as I knew it collapsed. Here is my personal journal entry from that cataclysmic day:
“Tuesday Sept. 11, 2001 America Is Attacked By Terrorists! Today was a horrible day in the history of our nation. Terrorists hijacked four separate airplanes. One was crashed into the North World Trade Tower [in New York City]. A half hour later, another one slammed into the South World Trade Tower…each over 100 stories high, full of thousands of people. Another airplane was crashed into the Southwest Wing of the Pentagon in Washington DC. The fourth landed in a field. No survivors.
“New York is in such a state of disaster it is impossible to know right now who and how many are dead, but NY Mayor Guiliani says “it will be more than any of us can bear.” I was in the car on the way to school when I turned on my radio…I called [Hubby] and he turned on the television and told me what was happening while I was driving. When I walked into Gardner Hall there was a small black and white TV on with students all huddled around. We watched the second tower collapse. They are gone, friend! GONE!! No one could speak. No one could breathe. I am shaken. I can’t seem to concentrate on anything…it is all so horrific. The images on the news, the reports and details coming in – it’s all too much. Too much. It’s just too much for me to process. I want to cry and cry and cry. But I can’t, because it’s so hard to believe it’s real. It’s a war zone. It’s so terrible. The girls are shaken. It was pretty upsetting at school today, especially for [7 year old ‘Beary’] because her teacher Miss Webster was bawling. Miss Webster’s family is in New York, and she couldn’t get ahold of them all day. Tonight Beary broke down and sobbed. I was at a rehearsal for [Utah Opera’s] CARMEN so Hubby comforted her and they had a nice prayer together. He told me she prayed for “all the hurting people and the crying Mommies”.
President [Gordon B.] Hinckley gave a memorial address and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir sang. All churches and religions gave emergency prayer services. Our nation cries out to God with one voice. I am so filled with grief. My heart is so heavy. So many lives are forever effected or ended today. So much grief encircles our nations’ heart today and the future days to come…It’s just not possible for this to really happen, is it!?…I read the hymn “Though Deepening Trials” tonight. I’m going to change it to the congregational hymn on Sunday. We will sing Verse 4: “What though our rights have been assailed? What though by foes we’ve been despoiled? Jehovah’s promise has not failed! Jehovah’s purpose is not foiled!”
We will overcome this! We will pull together and be strong!
God Please Bless and Keep our America!”