I was sitting in the living room, waiting for my two sisters to get ready to go. I had just said “good-bye” to my husband. Our church’s annual conference was in progress, and I had taken work off so that I could attend. My two sisters were staying with us so that they could go as well.
My husband called shortly after he left, telling me what had happened. It was around 7:30 a.m., but because we were in California, both crashes had taken place already. My husband told me what had happened. I asked him several times to make sure I had gotten it right. Stunned, I called my sisters into the living room, and we sat down and prayed for America, for the people affected by this awful deed.
We made our way to the church for the conference. With so many people in the auditorium (I’m going to take a guess and say over 400 people) it was quiet. Very quiet. Those who hadn’t heard beforehand, heard from others.
The morning sessions were different than had been planned. It was a very somber morning.
In the afternoon, my two sisters and I went shopping. It was a special treat to have them visiting me, and we still wanted to spend the time together. The mall we went to was deserted. Stores were closed. The stores that were open were pretty much empty--both of shoppers and workers. We didn’t end up spending much time there.
We lived close to the San Jose airport, and were used to the constant air traffic overhead. It was eerie to have absolutely no planes flying overhead.
At the time, we didn’t have a television. I have never seen footage from 9-11, just pictures. While I didn’t know anyone who was killed on that day, or anyone who knew someone, it was a day I’ll never forget.
I think what I remember most from that day just five years ago is quiet. Less cars on the road. No planes in the air. People, just sitting. Quiet. And sadness. A profound sadness.
Today, I pray for the people who are still mourning the loss of their loved ones, and for our country.
God bless America!
This post was previously published in 2006.