10 years later: Northwest remembers 9/11

Ten years ago today, Americans were shocked when a plane flew into the World Trade Center in New York City. They then watched in disbelief as a different plane crashed into the second of the two twin towers of the World Trade Center. Many were at a loss for words when yet another plane flew into the Pentagon, in Arlington, Vir. and a fourth plane crashed in a field in near Shanksville, Penn.

The oldest NW students were in second grade at the time.

Heading back to MCI, a passenger plane turns around over Northwest on Sept. 11, 2001. Planes across the United States received orders to immediately return to their designated airports in hopes of targeting any other hijacked planes. Photo by Ellie Simms

Even though many of us were too young to understand what was happening at the time, the events of Sept. 11 changed all our lives in some way. In honor of the 10th anniversary of the attacks, NW students and staff share their memories of Sept. 11, 2001.

“I think that with the security that is in place now, I feel much more safe than I did. I thought they handled it as far as the security measures go really well. I think that we kind of jumped on the wagon of retaliating a little too soon, though.” — Math teacher Aaron Sayers

“I think something like this could probably happen again. I just hope to God it doesn’t.” — Junior Garrett Allen

“People are more prejudiced against Muslims. People don’t understand Islam, and that’s why they are afraid of it. What happened on 9/11 was totally against Islam. Islam is against violence. 9/11 caused a lot of antagonism toward Muslims. If you studied the religion, you’d know it is very peaceful.” — Sophomore Omar Husain

“On my way home, I went to get gas for my car. You couldn’t pull into a gas station, they were so backed up. I drove within a five or seven-mile radius of where I live looking for a gas station that I could pull into. And you couldn’t find one. They were all full. I remember getting up the next morning at about 4 a.m. and I called what was then the Amoco station at the corner of Pflumm and SM Parkway. I said, ‘Do you have any gas left?’ And they said ‘Sure, we got plenty.’ I said, ‘Are you busy?’ They said, ‘No, come on up.’ I drove up and filled up all three of my family’s vehicles before 5 a.m. That was the one instance when I personally felt a little sense of panic.” — Principal Bill Harrington

“I think that you couldn’t not be aware about news and current events after that. It forced me to become engaged with my country and the world. It swept everyone up in it and and made us all awake to what was going on around us. It’s impossible to go through that and remain isolated.” — English teacher Ben Pabst

“We definitely need to not forget. Those who don’t study history are doomed to repeat it. It has been 10 years, and to me, you know, I was 7 when it happened so it seems very distant. But it can happen again, if we let our guard down, it will happen again. There are always going to be people in this world who are disturbed, or have some fascination and they think that they can change the world by killing thousands of people. As we move forward, we need to keep a constant reminder of what happened on that day, and continue to prepare for it to happen again.” — Senior Jonathan Volker

“It’s changed my career in law enforcement.You know were much more diligent. It’s changed the whole aspect of how we do our daily operations here at school.” — School resource officer Hank Goodman

“I was in second grade, and we were in school. A bunch of kids were getting checked out of class by their parents, but we didn’t know why. By the end of the day, there were maybe seven kids left, because all the parents were freaking out and taking their kids home.” — Senior Morgan Breckenridge

“I just never could get over the fact that Flight 93 did not resemble any plane crash in the history of plane crashes. The debris looked nothing like any other crashed plane sight. Did you know that the twin towers were meant to withstand commercial planes crashing into them? Not many people know that.” — Art teacher David Hunt