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September 11, 2001: A World Trade Center Survivor's Account

#41 User is offline   Anne 

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  Posted 11 September 2003 - 05:21 PM

Thank You for sharing your amazing story with us Tilly!
God Bless America!!


. . . we will never forget!
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#42 User is offline   tilly 

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  Posted 11 September 2003 - 05:35 PM

When I was asked to recount my story I did so because being there was so much different than seeing it on TV. There is a special thank you to all you guys that were kind enough to help me rework this piece, as I am no Hemingway lol

I would like to thank all of you for taking the time out to express your thoughts and kind words regarding that terrible day.

While I do often think of the events of that day my life has moved on to some exciting new adventures and I hope to take a horrible experience and turn something good out of it and do it with a bit of wicked humor, something I consider one of my most valuable assets besides the love of my family.

The things I experienced and saw that day will not unlikely be forgotten in my memory but in the end it is really those that lost their lives as victims, those that lost their lives saving other, the people whose lives were forever scared by the loss of their loved ones and the people that worked so hard in the aftermath to try to help all affected that deserve to be kept near to our hearts and prayers.

Then at the end of each day my mind goes to the brave men and women of our arm forces who are in Iraq and Afghanistan continuing to put their lives on the line to make sure that the evil we saw that day never harms others. Maybe one day soon they will come home to the families they love safe and sound bringing a safer world with them.

Much thanks to our military for your bravery and I pray for your safety and your family’s well being….


Bless you all…

This post has been edited by tilly: 11 September 2003 - 05:37 PM

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#43 User is offline   katmandu 

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Posted 11 September 2003 - 05:42 PM

thank you very much Tilly for sharing what happened to you that day with all of us. I actually read it last night but just couldn't find the right words to reply then. As hard as it was to read I can't imagine how hard it was to write, much less experience.

This post has been edited by katmandu: 11 September 2003 - 05:42 PM

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#44 User is offline   CowboyLee 

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Posted 11 September 2003 - 08:08 PM

I don''t really have anything to add except to thank you so much for sharing your story with us Tilly. I have a lump in my throat from reading it even now.

Lee
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#45 User is offline   hollywoodblows 

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Posted 11 September 2003 - 08:34 PM

Tilly I wish I could give you a big hug right now and tell you that you are a hero to all of us here. Your life was spared for a reason and your story wil inspire many. Thanks for sharing it with us. Hollywood Blows
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#46 User is offline   Floridamom 

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Posted 11 September 2003 - 09:08 PM

I cannot express in words my sorrow for your experience. I am horrified that this happened to anyone, but I am also joyous that you survived. Thank you from the bootom of my heart for sharing your story. I always understand things better when I can put an individual, human face to the experience.
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#47 User is offline   Ptarmigan 

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  Posted 11 September 2003 - 11:25 PM

Nice story, but very sad. I still feel very sad about the loss of the World Trade Center :) :( :( :( . Also, many innocent people had to die needlessly. What a shame! I am still also angry at the terrorists who did it and they will pay dearly with their life. Sorry if I use the angry icon, because that is how I feel about 9/11.
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#48 User is offline   barrisfan 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 01:08 AM

thank you tilly for your accounts. God bless you and we have not nor will not EVER forget what happened on that fateful day.


thought and prayers go out to all who lost their lives, their families, and their friends.
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#49 User is offline   enabler 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 02:03 AM

Words can not express my feelings after reading your account of that day, just god bless you
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#50 User is offline   LH_conservative 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 02:29 AM

Tilly --

Perhaps it would be an idea to compose a book of WTC survivor stories. I realize that it would probably be difficult to reach some of the people that made it out, though.

It would be a book to inspire hope and never let the world forget about that tragic day. I'm sure it would be a difficult read; but I think it would give those of us that weren't there a true understanding of what happened at ground zero. Overall, I think it would be a good thing.

Just a thought...
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#51 User is offline   greatestnamelessman 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 09:46 AM

I am speechless....your story is amazing.

From your description of the firefighter who pulled you out (not really remembering his face), I would like to think he was the close family freind we lost that day, or the brothers of 2 of my co-workers who were lost, or any of the hero firefighters who were lost that day whose families don't have any information on where they were or what they were doing.

You yourself are also a hero. Taking charge of the situation as best you could have, saving your friend and the elderly women, and letting everyone spend the night at your apartment. It's amazing to find out what your capable of when put to the test. You saved lives that day!

My fiancee at the time (now my wife) played a similar role that day also. She wasn't in the World Trade Center but worked at 61 Broadway (for those of you that don't know, 61 Broadway is 2 blocks east of WTC). She was one of the lucky ones to make the last Staten Island Ferry trip off the island. She grabbed as many of her co-workers as she could and they all spent the night at my in-laws house.

Its the countless stories like these of New Yorkers banding togethter and helping one another that I never get tired of hearing, and stories of survival like yours that should never stop being told. We cannot let a single person forget, ever. We as a country will have failed in our duties if we do.
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#52 User is offline   angelsRreal 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 10:09 AM

ralphwiggum, on Sep 11 2003, 07:42 AM, said:

A_Texian, on Sep 11 2003, 06:21 AM, said:

You couldn't see us, but we were most assuredly with you that day.  I've never in my life experienced such a feeling of helplessness.  I felt like jumping through the TV and "doing something" about it.

absolutely.

Me too. I felt so utterly helpless. I wanted to turn back the clock and tell everyone "don't go to work today"; my heart bleeds for all the firemen and police officers who died bravely doing their duty. As well as for all of the soldiers who have died preserving and defending our freedoms before and since this dastardly attack. All are still in my prayers. As our illustrious President George W. Bush said, May God continue to bless America.
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#53 Guest_loriann_*

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 11:24 AM

I wanted to echo what Texian said...

We watched it all live from the West Coast and as the towers fell that morning, my daughter and I burst into tears..

To know that you were going thru this excrutiating ordeal while we sat, safely in our home watching it all unfold is ... god, words fail me..

Again, thank you for sharing this with us..

This post has been edited by loriann1: 12 September 2003 - 11:25 AM

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#54 User is offline   RedMoonProject 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 05:47 PM

http://gbcdata.artifice.com/gbc/images/cid_green_064_165.jpg
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#55 User is offline   financialpanther 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 07:33 PM

I'm speechless. It seems surreal to me that anyone actually survived the horrors of that day. God bless you.
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#56 Guest_Hanoi Sean Penn_*

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  Posted 12 September 2003 - 07:41 PM

RedMoonProject, on Sep 12 2003, 10:47 PM, said:

http://gbcdata.artifice.com/gbc/images/cid_green_064_165.jpg

:)
Its still hard to believe that those towers are gone and so many people died in them :( ..
Just Doesnt seem possible.
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#57 User is offline   patrickal 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 09:12 PM

Tilly,
Your account sent chills through me, and not just because of the facts you laid out. I was supposed to be on your floor that day. I was, at the time, working for Nortel. We were doing a joint project with IBM at the time, and we had a project meeting on 59 every Tuesday at 9AM. I'm not sure if you were in the networking group. I did not know many of the Dean Witter people, but I knew most of the IBM'rs and the Nortel team.

We were having some pretty difficult technical problems, and I had been down there several times during the prior several weeks. I was planning on being there on that Tuesday. On Monday afternoon, I got a call from another IBM person asking me if I could attend a meeting in Scranton, PA the following morning. For purely selfish reasons, I said yes. From my house to Scranton is a one and a half hour drive. I was able to sleep until 7 instead of getting up at 5:15.

I was halfway to Scranton when the first plane hit. I was listening to WCBS Newsradio 88. My first reaction was that it could not be an accident, it was just too clear. I said to myself, thank God it was Tower 1 and not 2. When the second plane hit 1 minutes later, I knew right away is was terrorism. Now I was afraid for everyone I knew there.

I got to the IBM office in Scranton just as the Pentagon got hit. We cancelled the meeting right away. I was afraid of higways and state borders being closed, so I turned around and headed home. 15 minutes into the drive, Tower 2 came down.

I had been trying to call everyone I knew down there and could not get through. Now I was sure they were gone. I could not believe what was happening. I drove at 90+ MPH all the way home. It wasn't till 2PM that afternoon that I finally was able to reach one of the IBM specialists. She was supposed to be there also; only her husband told her that morning that an appraiser was coming to see their house for re-mortgaging, and she would have to work out of the house. From there, she was able to track everyone else down, and she told be that everyone we knew was safe. We were crying on the phone for at least 30 minutes talking about how lucky we were. After reading your story, I thank God that I was not there. I could not live with those memories.

I found out two days later that Orio Palmer, a Battallion Chief with NYFD, was missing. He was a friend from childhood who grew up in the Bronx with me. It was determined later that he had just gotten to the 78th Floor of Tower 2 as it started to collapse. I think about him constantly, and always wonder if I would have passed him on the stairs or in the lobby. It haunts me.

Six weeks after the attack, I was laid off by Nortel. Out of work for 9 months, I was able to land a job with IBM, working with some of the same people that were there that day. They are good people. I am now working in NYC every day, and I can't say I like it. I am always waiting for the next round to occur. I stayed out of NYC yesterday. I will never walk down the street or ride the subway in New York with a sense of ease.

It seems as though you have found peace in your life. I wish nothing but good for you. You have seen hell up close and personal, you deserve nothing but heaven now. God Bless.
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#58 User is offline   mikeaustin 

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Posted 12 September 2003 - 09:41 PM

wow, powerful story patrickal... welcome to the board! Don't know if you just wanted to drop in and leave, but hope not. Thanks for sharing.
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#59 User is offline   Anne 

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  Posted 12 September 2003 - 09:54 PM

i ditto mike in those sentiments patrickal!

thank you for sharing!
I am so thankful to hear from the survivors as it brings hope to that fatal day!
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#60 User is offline   crowsnest 

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Posted 13 September 2003 - 01:12 AM

Tilly,

Thank you for sharing this horrifying event with all of us. I hope it has been easier for you in the last year.
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