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Sep 11, 2008

Remembering September 11

Seven years ago today, I was getting ready for work in a little Wymount apartment in Provo, Utah when the phone rang. It was Garry's mom, who had called to tell us about the events in progress in New York City and Washington, D.C. Garry and I switched on the TV as we continued our preparations for work and school.

Dumbfounded, we saw the gaping hole in one World Trade Center tower and heard reports of the Pentagon "bombing" in Washington. We were riveted, but we also had classes and employers, so we left home and turned on car radios instead. I drove to Wavetronix, where I was an administrative assistant. Garry went to class at BYU, excitedly anticipating the huge annual career fair that afternoon that would hopefully provide his post-graduation job in December. Little did we know how much the world would change.

As I look back on that day, I remember watching live news coverage in my boss's office and seeing the towers crumble in real time as horrified reporters (and my fellow employees) looked on. I remember being eight months pregnant and wondering what kind of world I'd be raising my baby boy in. I remember feeling scared and violated.

In the small corner of the world that Garry and I occupied, the immediate result of the terrorist attacks was the complete cancellation of the Marriott School of Management career fair. Air traffic was restricted and precious few of the recruiters could fly in for the event. When the fair was rescheduled a month later, only a handful of recruiters came. By that time, belts were tightened, hiring efforts were frozen, and the Marriott School's 98% placement record fell to 33% that year. Garry wasn't one of the lucky third.

But life went on. Our 9/11 "misfortunes" are tiny and insignificant compared to the devastating tragedies many experienced. But that's our story. I think about it every year on this day.

Where were you when the attacks happened? How did they affect your life?
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