Saturday, September 11, 2010

Never Forget: 9.11

Reposted from a few years ago:

Remembering 9-11

It's hard to believe it has been 8 years since this TRAGIC day.

This is something I wrote a few years ago, in 2006 remembering 9-11-01:
5 years ago, our lives changed. Forever. I remember lying in bed with my soon to be husband in our apartment on University Place and 10th Street in downtown Manhattan and hearing and feeling the roar of a huge plane. It rocked our apartment. I vividly remember saying to him "Oh my God, did you hear that plane?" Philip is a pilot/photographer and he quickly replied "sweetheart, that plane is flying way too low and that's not the normal flight pattern." Seconds later, he said "it crashed. I heard a boom." Right then, our phone rang and it was a friend telling us a plane crashed into the World Trade Center. Moments later, the phone rang again-some friends calling to see if it was Philip's plane. We turned on the tv, got dressed, and then went onto the street. A block from our apartment, along 5th Avenue, we had a clear view of the Towers. We went back to our roof where we had a clear view also and started shooting. All of a sudden, I remember pointing and saying "oh my God, look at that plane" when the second plane vanished from my site and we saw a ball of flames into the second tower. It never registered with me what happened. People were huddled together crying. We called our families to let them know we were ok, got off an email to a friend in St Louis who wanted to know if we were ok, and then the phone and internet went dead. A woman from my floor was in the corner on our roof hysterical, crying to her mother who was in Paris saying "mommy I am so scared, mommy mommy." Just typing this makes me cry for the fear she had, the pain she was in being all alone. She was probably in her mid 30's and crying for her mother. At the time, one of my big clients was the Port Authority and weeks before, we were on a shoot on the 68th floor of the North Tower. I know if this happened on a day I was up there on a shoot, I just don't think I would have gotten out.
I don't remember much else about the day.
I think I was on overdrive. It took me a long time to cry because I still was in some kind of daze. I remember we walked down there after the towers clapsed and as soon as we got to Church Street, I couldn't breath anymore. We turned around and walked home. We tried to help along the way but so many people were out that there was not much we could do. Later that day, we went back and we were right at Ground Zero, staring at the metal piece that was stuck in the ground for so long. I do remember the Daily News calling me to see where I was and I told them I was at Ground Zero. They asked me to shoot some firemen, and get up to the paper FAST. I asked how fast and they said NOW. A policeman took me in his car and we sped up 6th Avenue to 33rd Street. There was not a single person anywhere. If anyone has ever seen Charlton Heston in "The Omega Man" this is what NYC felt like.
4 weeks later was our wedding. The following Saturday I was supposed to shoot a wedding and I got the call that it was cancelled because 4 family members had died that day. My friends were planning a surprise wedding shower for me in NJ on September 16 but they decided to tell me because they knew I wasn't going to leave NYC otherwise.
We went to Greece on our honeymoon and were pretty much glued to CNN 90% of the time.
There's not much else I can do but cry.I cry alot remembering this day. And let us ALWAYS remember all those innocent people we lost on that day.

There was a woman with my last name, Donna Marie Rothenberg, who perished on 9-11-01, and a man from NJ named Mark Rothenberg. As far as I know, we were not related but from everything I have read about them, they sounded like remarkable people. I would have liked to have known them in this life. Here is something I found that was written about them:



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