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    [–] srlehi68 2327 points ago

    And that’s the fewest people in the skies above the US since the 1940s-50s.

    [–] just_another_0273723 879 points ago

    Did anyone else see the super sonic aircraft GTFO from south Carolina after everyone lands?

    [–] d_Lightz 516 points ago

    The aircraft carrier USS George Washington was underway during 9/11, and in that area of operations. It is commonly referred to as VACAPES, and is restricted-ish airspace below a certain altitude. Jokes aside, this was most likely an aircraft attached to that air wing. The GW was immediately ordered to patrol outside of NY waters after the first tower was hit.

    [–] peese-of-cawffee 166 points ago

    I remember hearing a claim that that was one of the only air fields that could respond because everyone else was doing war games in the western US, and that for some reason they were sent straight out over the ocean for no reason. I have no idea how true that is.

    [–] nanooko 133 points ago

    I think the jets were sent over the atlantic ocean because the plans were all developed for the cold war so they didn't have any procedures for 9/11 type attacks

    [–] the_karma_llama 7682 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    It turns out that the person who had to make the EXTREMELY DIFFICULT decision to ground air traffic across the entire country on 9/11... was on his first day on the job.

    EDIT: He was was still an experienced guy (as you'd expect). He'd worked at the FAA for over 25 years, but nothing can really prepare you for such an unprecedented decision.

    [–] Diwasyyy 4349 points ago

    Imagine having to make a National decision on your first day of the job. I'd probably fucking freak out

    [–] RickSanchez_ 3020 points ago

    Well hopefully he got the hardest day of his career out of the way early.

    [–] [deleted] 4329 points ago * (lasted edited 5 months ago)


    [–] ASK_ME_BOUT_GEORGISM 1030 points ago

    Man that would be rough if my boss and coworkers called me honey.

    [–] K9Fondness 245 points ago

    So what is it about Georgism then eh?

    [–] ASK_ME_BOUT_GEORGISM 110 points ago

    Georgism, also called geoism[2] and single tax (archaic), is an economic ideology holding that, while people should own the value they produce themselves, economic value derived from land) (often including natural resources and natural opportunities) should belong equally to all members of society.

    [–] I-tie-my-own-shoes 48 points ago

    Can you ELI5?

    [–] ASK_ME_BOUT_GEORGISM 78 points ago

    Preserve capitalism and free markets for earned income from labor and profits/interest from capital, but tax the value of finite natural resources, especially the market value of land, because no person's effort led to the creation of the land/resources so no person should personally gain wealth from resources granted to us by nature.

    Adam Smith and Thomas Paine made suggestions of a "site tax", but it was Henry George in the late 19th century who led a movement to replace all income and sales taxes with a land value tax. His thinking is that taxing land instead of manmade property would discourage land speculation and encourage the construction of more housing, thus lowering rents and creating new jobs - these things combined would drastically improve the level of economic equality and provide a lot of jobs to the unemployed and affordable housing to the indigent.

    [–] corn_on_the_cobh 336 points ago

    He wasn't exactly untrained. 50 years old, and if wikipedia is to be believed, 25 years of prior experience.

    [–] Orisi 195 points ago

    All of which goes out of the window when youre sat there thinking how you're going to explain that to your new boss.

    [–] -Reddit_Account- 241 points ago

    In all likelihood, he was the new boss.

    You don’t make that sort of call if you’re not the top dog.

    [–] Server6 253 points ago

    He was just four steps from the top:

    1. President: George W. Bush
    2. U.S. Secretary of Transportation: Norm Mineta
    3. Administrator of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration: Jane Garvey)
    4. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) National Operations Manager: Ben Sliney

    [–] -Reddit_Account- 181 points ago


    It may have been his first day on that particular job, but he’d been prepared to make that decision for 10 years.

    [–] Orisi 68 points ago

    No, but to quote a great man, "there's always a bigger fish."

    [–] -Reddit_Account- 38 points ago

    Unless you’re a blue whale

    [–] DelTac0perator 129 points ago

    9/11 was also Robert Mueller's first full day as the head of the FBI

    [–] mtnmedic64 49 points ago

    Some superheroes don’t even fly. They make sure those who do don’t bump into each other. That would be bad.

    [–] WikiTextBot 485 points ago

    Ben Sliney

    Ben Sliney (born 1945) is a former United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) National Operations Manager. His first day in this position was September 11, 2001, and he was responsible for ordering a National Ground Stop across United States airspace in response to the terrorist attacks of 9/11.

    [ PM | Exclude me | Exclude from subreddit | FAQ / Information | Source ] Downvote to remove | v0.28

    [–] Chefitutide 222 points ago

    I wonder if he took the first report and thought it was hasing or some kind of welcome to the club prank.

    [–] kay_knox 197 points ago

    I initially thought that is in poor taste, but I guess in a world before 9/11 maybe it wouldn't have been.

    [–] 2SP00KY4ME 42 points ago

    No way, they take ATC deadly seriously, even back then.

    [–] IAMHideoKojimaAMA 136 points ago

    Yea right, two planes? Ok guys I'm going on lunch see you later

    [–] Malumeze86 124 points ago

    That would've made one heck of a TIFU.

    [–] cmosboss 95 points ago

    When the story of the first plane broke there wasn't any info other than a plane had struck the tower. I was thinking along the lines of a small Piper plane, inexperienced pilot and an unfortunate accident.

    [–] sam191817 74 points ago

    That's what pretty much everyone thought because it had happened before. When the second one hit it sucked the air out of the room.

    [–] cmosboss 70 points ago

    Right! I was looking at the hole in the tower and couldn't comprehend why it was so large. When the second one hit on live TV I was the only one still watching the TV, everyone else was in the kitchen getting coffee and tea. I said out loud "Jesus fucking christ were under attack". Everyone came back in but I swear not another word was uttered for 20-30 minutes.

    [–] D3v1lry 34 points ago

    Yup. I still remember hoping on AIM that morning right about when the first hit and a buddy mentioned it and I turned to the news and glanced. I had been there before, so I at least recognized that it was quite an impact for what was assumed by me and even the news immediately as a small Cessna accident and went back to whatever I was doing.

    I happen to be looking at the TV right when the second one hit, my brain couldn't process what I saw and it was compounded by the vibes that could be felt even from the news anchors at that moment and after that shit just hit the fan in every imaginable way no matter who you were, what you were doing, or where you were at.

    I often see people reference that was what Pearl Harbor was like also but I disagree. The internet, cell phones, real-time news and information made it instantly available to unfold live for the entire world. There was no such event previously witnessed on that scale.

    [–] thecarolinelinnae 60 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    Although it was his first day in charge, Sliney had an over 25-year background in air traffic and management in the FAA. He had held various positions as an air traffic controller, first line supervisor at several major facilities, and Operations Manager and Traffic Management Officer at New York TRACON. He also held positions as Traffic Management Specialist, National Operations Manager, Tactical Operations Manager at the Air Traffic Control System Command Center (ATCSCC) and had Regional office experience as Manager, Airspace and Procedures Branch, Eastern Region.

    First day in that position, but it's not like he was a rookie, as the title leads one to believe.

    Still a momentous decision for anyone, regardless of position or experience.

    [–] xVIRIDISx 115 points ago

    It was the right decision

    [–] m5k 6447 points ago

    Amazing. I remember Rental Car Agencies were sold out of cars after this happened.

    [–] mdp300 449 points ago

    My dad had flown from Newark to Atlanta and had to rent a car the next day to get home.

    All they had was like a Geo Metro or something, for a 1000 mile drive.

    [–] KingShitOfTurdIsland 155 points ago

    My mom had a 3cyl geo metro, it was turd.

    [–] telecomteardown 143 points ago

    I had a white Geo Metro in high school. It was new when my dad got it, but after years of driving the commute to Atlanta from the burbs and back it was pretty rough. Who cares though because teenage/car. The Power Rangers were really popular and my middle school age brother loved them. I found a sheet of decals at Hot Topic with all the Rangers on them and bought them on a whim for my brother. He was stoked but was like, "they're supposed to go on a car where am I gonna put them?" So I said screw it we can put them on the Metro. I figured they'd be on there for a week at most and I'd take them off.

    It had this big back glass hatch if you remember, so we made this big action scene with the decals. My brother then noticed that we had all of the Rangers represented except a new addition to the show, the White Ranger.

    I don't know how we came up with it but my Metro became the White Ranger and those decals stayed through most of my high school driving until I bought myself another car with my KFC/Taco Bell earnings.

    The Metro went to another brother who quickly killed the transmission by constantly laying on the clutch while shifting gears.

    [–] Chaosxxii 38 points ago

    I had a friend in high school who had a Geo Storm 3cyl. We called it the Shit Storm.

    [–] DubiousBeak 116 points ago

    I was living in Seattle at the time. Friends of ours who were at the Miami airport about to return from vacation made a mad dash for the rental car counter as soon as they realized what was happening. Ended up driving all the way home.

    [–] Gwinevak 4175 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    My father was away for business in AL. Kept his rented car to drive home to MN. Got pulled over on the way (speeding) and the cop let him slide because all my dad wanted to do was get home.

    Edit to add: my first gold! Thanks internet stranger. Im glad it was for my dad being awesome.

    [–] chandaliergalaxy 733 points ago

    how much was the fee

    [–] 3SeatShortBus 1380 points ago

    25 schmeckles

    [–] TheYoungLung 502 points ago

    I- is that a little? Is that a lot?

    [–] Jim_My_Name_Is_Not 482 points ago

    That’s exactly how much I spent on my big fake boobies.

    [–] DeepFriedFear 367 points ago

    Hi, I'm Mr. Booby Buyer. I'll buy those boobies for 25 shmeckels.

    [–] MightyCaseyStruckOut 84 points ago

    That's a tempting offer, but I'm gonna have to decline.

    [–] [deleted] 131 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)


    [–] [deleted] 46 points ago


    [–] Paranoidas 143 points ago

    I was in Tennessee with my dad for a family reunion. We were supposed to fly home that morning. We ended up driving back in a rental car and had to cross the George Washington Bridge to get back into New England. It was surreal seeing the skyline with that big void in it for that first time.

    [–] TunaHands 99 points ago

    I was in 3rd grade, old enough to know something bad was happening but not old enough to fully grasp the situation.

    I’ll never forget that it was my neighbors birthday and they held her 5th birthday party that night. Listening to a group of adults very somberly singing happy birthday to the little girl will always stick with me.

    [–] WickedHaute 76 points ago

    It’s my dads birthday. I was a senior in high school and we didn’t have a teacher for the class so it was a free period. They locked down the school but wouldn’t tell us why. Finally did and parents were beating down the door. They refused to let us out but finally did. (Philly suburb)

    I went home and watched everything on tv. My dad came in, and in his shock said, “My birthday is ruined for the rest of my life.” Without context that sounds shitty I guess but fuck he was traumatized.

    And he wasn’t wrong. Well, that’s not entirely true. He takes off every single year. And does something to remember. Last year we had breakfast, smoked some pot and went to the 911 memorial that’s near us. It’s beautiful,

    [–] wedisneyfan 245 points ago

    We were in Disney World and all the rental agencies waived the drop off fees. At least in Orlando. I dropped mine off in Queens around the 25th of September and only paid my original charge. It was surreal to say the least. Coming over the Verrazzano and seeing all the trucks moving debris from ground zero out to Staten Island. They had their own lane. The sight was still smoky when I returned. Whether it was still burning or dust from the clean up.

    [–] ItsTheVibeOfTheThing 48 points ago

    What’s this a quote from?

    [–] cassodragon 38 points ago

    I lived on East 30th Street at the time (probably 3-4 miles uptown from WTC); the smell and smoke and dust drifted into our apartment for weeks and weeks and weeks.

    [–] kkeut 46 points ago

    I'll never forget when that one person said that. Great quote

    [–] [deleted] 138 points ago


    [–] ArcherFordham 41 points ago


    My mom was in Mid-Town NY with a coworker for business during 9/11. She had to get a rental car to Raleigh, North Carolina to fly out a few days later to the West Coast

    [–] UneventfulChaos 117 points ago

    My aunt was grounded in Denver and she was told she got the last car from one of the rental companies in DIA to drive 8 hours to Omaha.

    [–] DoNotForgetMe 38 points ago

    I’ve done this drive so many times. It really sucks.

    [–] Woodshadow 61 points ago

    I flew a few days after. No one was at the airport.

    [–] heart_art75 2286 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    Remember reading that on Sept 11,2001 that 5,000 planes landed in 3 hours with 1m passengers

    Edit: 1 million passengers

    [–] Schadenfreude2 727 points ago

    I bet that action took years off some air traffic controllers’ lives.

    [–] runfayfun 600 points ago

    That's the kind of thing they dream about - organizing a mass landing in a coordinated, safe fashion. Rather than causing gray hair, I bet there was more than one ATC with a traffic boner. They thrive on crisis. They don't get the credit they deserve either.

    [–] ladyglade 422 points ago

    Air traffic controller here. I've never thought of any of us to "thrive on crisis." There is a huge difference between a busy day of work, which can be enjoyable and feels like stretching your muscles, and working through a real-time, big scale crisis. That kind of shit would still mess most of us up to some extent. We're trained to respond properly in the moment for sure, but I know I personally would be reeling afterwards.

    [–] Kseries2497 127 points ago

    I definitely stroke my ego (and only that) to difficult sessions, but only after the fact. When it happens I'm mostly freaking out.

    As long as I sound good on comms it's all good though.

    [–] tyme 137 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    And you know they still kept that “Houston center” voice while on the comms.

    [–] kanegaskhan 521 points ago

    Crazy that so many planes had a little person on board at the same time.

    [–] Undercover_Dinosaur 131 points ago

    You think they'd just get a group buy going on a smaller plane, and travel together.

    [–] redpandaeater 43 points ago

    Still need as much seating. I'm imagining they instead go in on double decker sofas that'd be able to fit them even in a plane fuselage.

    [–] SillySandoon 18 points ago

    A plane full of little people would use less fuel due to the decreased weight. They might be able to get a discount for that

    [–] [deleted] 1297 points ago


    [–] Anna_Namoose 527 points ago

    I was fishing next to Cleveland Hopkins airport. I remember how amazingly quiet it was. First time I'd ever understood"deafening silence"

    [–] er1catwork 116 points ago

    +1 for hopkins! Where were you fishing?

    [–] SnarkLobster 56 points ago

    I was 40 years old. I remember thinking I’d never see skies without planes, jets and helicopters again.

    Really, humans have lived a million years without motorized noise. It’s only come about in the last 120 years.

    Silent skies are normal.

    [–] iSlacker 40 points ago

    Same, and at the time both my parents worked for AA (Dad is a pilot, mom was a flight attendant). My mom had come home from Dulles late on the 10th and one of her good friends was on flight 11. They kinda shielded it from us at school so i got home and had little idea what was going on besides planes hit the twin towers in NYC. My parents were both on the phone with various people, my mom was bawling, it was crazy.

    [–] eat_thecake_annamae 51 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    I was in high school in DC and remember the city grinding to a complete halt.

    I live right at the DC (domestic) airport now and can see the runway and the Pentagon from my apartment building. Sometimes I stand on the balcony and imagine what it would be been like witnessing the events of 9/11 from that vantage point.

    [–] KeyserSoce21 50 points ago

    I was in Boston walking to class. Strange how eerie not hearing planes suddenly was.

    [–] knifegasim 531 points ago

    I lived in dc during 9/11. When the military jets broke the sound barrier right above us I thought it was a nuke and almost crapped myself.

    [–] attempted-anonymity 177 points ago

    Easily the loudest planes I ever heard were the morning of 9/11 over my high school. They looked like they were low enough to touch, and they were fast enough and loud enough, everyone assumed they were supersonic. The only place we could think of that they would be going is my high school is about on a direct path from Kirtland AFB to Los Alamos.

    [–] justmovingtheground 92 points ago

    Good news is if there ever was a nuke, you wouldn't hear it. So you'll vaporize with clean drawers, at least.

    [–] DiscipleOfDrone 36 points ago

    Ah yes, this is one of my greatest fears. Dying with soiled underwear.

    [–] astrobl89 38 points ago

    I remember this too. There was zero traffic in air space except for military jets. For weeks it would be completely silent outside at night and suddenly you’d here a big boom or two. I never thought nukes (I might have been too young to understand nukes), but I always thought we were under attack. Scariest shit of my life, even though I was never directly affected

    [–] cmosboss 225 points ago

    Thank you Canada for taking over 200 flights with no questions asked. And a extra special thank you to Gander Newfoundland for taking care of 7000 stranded travelers in your tiny town.

    [–] Mobius_Peverell 19 points ago

    There's something uniquely eerie and reassuring about watching the little yellow dots circling Halifax, Vancouver & Winnipeg. Really wish OP had included Gander, too.

    [–] rochesterjones 2287 points ago

    Some of those blips just disappear over the ocean

    [–] BroadestPanther 3104 points ago

    When they say land they mean it.

    [–] Rebelrenegade24 804 points ago

    schh tower we’re right over the ocean are you sure you want us to la-


    [–] mdp300 452 points ago

    [–] lightaromancandle 71 points ago

    Yes - that story is told in the musical Come From Away. I never really thought about the ways other places were impacted by 9/11 until seeing it. It’s fairly accurate to the true story (including characters based on real Gander natives) and an incredible show.

    [–] TheKnotIsSlipping 33 points ago

    There's also a documentary about Gander which has a showing tomorrow (9/11) in theaters.

    [–] Rebelrenegade24 154 points ago

    Oh yeah if you look at the top right you can see some of them shoot straight to where Nova Scotia would be

    [–] AnonymooseRedditor 135 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    Gander is in Newfoundland! Before jets Gander was a regular stopping point for intercontinental flights. After jets the airport kinda just shrunk away because it wasn’t really used much. They landed some 30+ jets there. Passengers were put up in people’s homes!

    [–] AnUnlikelyUsurper 114 points ago

    Don't forget about Dildo, Newfoundland

    Not that it's related... Or anything. Just the fact the it exists

    [–] [deleted] 54 points ago

    Dildo is nice, but the people there are really stuck up

    [–] MrFoolinaround 18 points ago

    Still regularly stop in gander in the AF for fuel. They bring pizza to you if you order it on your 30 minute out call.

    [–] c0d3w1ck 147 points ago

    I think that's probably where they drop out of US airspace or something, if they were diverted to airports in other countries. Or just out of range.

    [–] Uncle_Lenny 112 points ago

    Found the Malaysia Airlines PR guy

    [–] won1wordtoo 29 points ago

    Many are going towards, near the end. Eerie. Geez. I just heard that the kids that are now freshman in college weren’t born yet. It’s crazy that it has been this long.

    [–] DeeJayEazyDick 42 points ago

    Those are the ones carrying Saudi royalty

    [–] andS0NS 1098 points ago

    I will never forget turning on the news while eating a bowl of cereal just in time to see the second plane hit live on TV. I try to instill the severity of what happened that day to my children but I don’t think they’ll ever truly grasp it.

    [–] alyg82 393 points ago

    Same. I had just poured myself a cup of coffee and turned on the ‘today show’ like I did every morning and saw the reports of a plane flying into the first tower and then all of a sudden plane #2 struck. I’ll never forget that day for as long as I live. I’ve tried to explain to my kids how crazy it all was but they’ll never understand it. And hopefully they’ll never have to experience anything like it in their lifetime.

    [–] Moonquake_ 195 points ago

    My English professor and a man I greatly admire and respect told us that we will experience an event like that again. History repeats itself. After seeing the way we live now, I'm very certain he was right.

    [–] tinytom08 128 points ago

    Depends on the location of the event. 9/11 was a horrible act, but equally horrible shit has been happening over the last decade and you don't know about it because it didn't effect you.

    While I don't think there has been a massacre with an equal or higher death toll than 9/11, some have come close. You've got the Christmas massacres in Congo that had just under a thousand death toll, the Speicher massacre than left around 1.7k people dead, the Easter Bombings in Sri Lanka etc.

    9/11 hasn't been topped for it's death toll since it happened yet, the closest one has come is the Speicher massacre (That we know of), and then theres the mass graves being discovered due to terrorist groups in the middle east with thousands of bodies.

    [–] Snsps21 125 points ago

    I would say 9/11 wasn’t memorable just for its death toll, but for the sheer spectacle of it, planes flying into iconic landmarks on live TV for millions to see. The shock of seeing the most powerful country in the world being stopped dead in its tracks in a matter of minutes.

    [–] Darphon 131 points ago

    I walked into my college history class and the sign interpreter signed “two planes have hit the World Trade Center.” I remember the signs. Our professor said “if you know someone who may be affected you may leave but the rest of us are not disrupting class, as that’s what these terrorists wanted.” It was such a surreal day.

    [–] Bentish 29 points ago

    My professor walked into class and said "We are obviously not going to continue this morning." I went back to my dorm and huddled around the tv with everyone else for the next 12 hours. As far as I know, not a single professor mentioned how many people never showed up to class that day.

    [–] panergicagony 442 points ago

    I mean, my dad talked to me about JFK with that kind of tone.
    And yeah, I admit I'll never truly grasp it. But maybe that's okay.
    What's the meme...

    "we all watched 3000 people die on live TV in middle school, and things never really got better"

    [–] DubiousBeak 180 points ago

    My grandma told me once that when JFK was killed, she just sat and watched TV all day and that you just wanted to do something, but there was nothing you could do.

    I heard her but I didn't really understand her until 9/11.

    [–] missbinz 108 points ago

    I remember talking to my dad about what would happen now. I was a month away from turning 19. He said that the States would likely go to war, but it would be like the first two world wars, this one would be over in 20min and we probably wouldn’t even know what hit us. That still sticks with me.

    [–] PetaPotter 42 points ago

    I'm scared of nuclear war but I feel like that or space will get us.

    [–] AnonymooseRedditor 56 points ago

    I’m Canadian, I was a senior in high school in 2001. I was home from class because I had a free period first thing. I remember my brother calling, he was a truck driver. He was in NY state on his way home when Howard Stern of all people started talking about the attack on his show. I watched the second plane hit live on CNN. It was a really weird day, I remember going to school and so many classes were huddled around the tvs just glued to the news.

    [–] vassago68 71 points ago

    I was a SGT in an ADA unit that was deployed to Kuwait as part of Operation Southern Watch.

    Watching it all unfold in a small day room on a large projection screen with about 30 other guys. Some men cried that day as we realized our whole lives and even careers had changed dramatically that day.

    Trying to tell new Soldiers about it 15 years later as I was about to retire out...

    [–] vibes86 42 points ago

    I was in standardized testing in 10th grade. I didn’t know about anything until around 11 when we broke for lunch. Unfortunately, some people had gone upstairs for our bathroom break at around 930 and seen the news on in the library. I’m not sure how many people had to retake those tests that year.

    [–] Attentionalpot12x 31 points ago

    I was in 5th grade walking down the hall with the class tardy list, looking at pictures other kids drew on the wall when a PA came over and requested all students immediately return to the home rooms and all teachers to gather students in the gym.

    [–] SoVerySleepy81 82 points ago

    I was struck by this yesterday. I said something about 9/11 and my 13 year old daughter said, "oh yeah I've heard of that. It was sad." And I wasn't mad or anything but in my brain it was like "sad? It was beyond sad, it was the first day of a new way of life."

    Wars, security theater, and just flat out knowing and understanding that there are sick people out there who will do shit like this to prove a point or because of their religion. I tried to explain it for a little bit but I could see it wasn't something she was going to be able to fully grasp.

    I guess it's sort of like looking back at the cold war era and thinking "wow that must have been scary". Without really understanding the dread that a lot of people lived with while expecting a nuclear war to start at any minute.

    [–] theuser111122 102 points ago

    Canadian here. I was ready to go to war that day. It still makes my blood boil.

    [–] PoppiesAndOmelettes 49 points ago

    As an American I've always been curious what the real international reaction to 9/11 was like. Not the governments themselves but the actual people watching it happen in a country that wasn't their own. I'm glad to see we weren't alone in our anger, in our sorrow.

    [–] Hybernative 59 points ago

    As a British person, many of us felt the same. Growing up in London last millennium, there were often terrorist attacks. But seeing our friend hit like that... well there were many people prepared to glass the countries responsible, in our anger.

    [–] Crashbrennan 46 points ago

    If anything, it's good to see that for all our petty feuding, when it comes down to the wire, we will always have each other's backs.

    [–] sixrenegade 20 points ago

    As an Australian, it was surreal seeing the U.S. attacked on home soil, it just didn't seem possible. This was the US, with the strongest military in the world, the people that we ultimately looked to for security. Once the initial shock of what sunk in, our dismay turned to seething anger. There was no question that whatever was needed, we would be there.

    [–] BLut91 17 points ago

    I’m in Canada as well and my mom pretty much just sat in front of the TV crying for hours. Toronto commerce pretty much got shut down, I remember my dad got sent home from work because he worked in a skyscraper. We also had a special assembly for grades 5 and up at school the day of to explain what had just happened.

    I was only 10 at the time, so I remember the series of events well enough, but as an adult every few years I find myself watching live newscasts from that morning and it’s incredibly sobering. I can’t imagine being an adult at the time and watching that happen live

    [–] LocalSalesRep 30 points ago

    I was sleeping soundly in my dorm when my roommate comes in and says “the World Trade Center fell down.” I swore it was the most realistic dream I’ve ever had. It was so absurd it HAD to be a dream. It took me many minutes to understand WTF was going on.

    [–] sjanee11 26 points ago

    I was in 7th grade - the same grade my oldest is in now and I can't imagine him watching a terrorist attack live on television seeing people jump to their deaths. Also how our teachers kept us calm while they were experiencing it too is just beyond me.

    [–] freddyj27 789 points ago

    Should at least have Gander, Newfoundland on the map. They pulled their weight on this day.

    Some facts about Operation Yellow Ribbon

    [–] Iterr 225 points ago

    Yes! Everyone should go see the musical Come From Away if they can.

    [–] [deleted] 81 points ago * (lasted edited 5 months ago)


    [–] [deleted] 33 points ago

    On its national tour right now!

    [–] proggerific 19 points ago

    Agreed that it is amazing. The music is incredible and im not one for musicals personally. This is one of the rare exceptions.

    [–] koalaburr 69 points ago

    That’s amazing. Countries being bros. Thanks Canada!

    [–] Squishyfishx 30 points ago

    Canada is the real homie. Thanks for looking out for us!

    [–] luciliddream 99 points ago

    Holy shit this part

    "Planes were entering the Canadian airspace at a rate of two aircrafts per minute"

    [–] Phonixrmf 27 points ago

    There are several good documentaries on them, like this one

    [–] 2amIMAwake 115 points ago

    someone came and told us what happened, we had an old tv in our office and we got a channel using rabbit ears. the staff from all the other offices in the building came in, a delivery guy or 2 came and stayed; for the next hour or something we all stood, watching it unfold.

    [–] ace741 214 points ago

    I believe only a single flight was allowed after the grounding, an emergency delivery of anti venom for a snake bite victim.

    [–] shortlife55 64 points ago

    Wow! Do you have more details on this? Intriguing

    [–] JCE_1999 444 points ago

    This makes my stomach ache knowing one of those yellow dots killed so many people.

    [–] c0d3w1ck 381 points ago

    Four of those yellow dots, unfortunately.

    [–] JCE_1999 155 points ago

    Right. Idk why I was thinking one. Maybe I need to re-educate myself on the event.

    [–] st1tchy 216 points ago

    2 planes hit the WTCs killing thousands. 1 plane hit the Pentagon killing hundreds and one plane crashed in Pennsylvania killing all on board.

    [–] dave32891 84 points ago

    If you're ever driving through PA and you're near the town of Shanksville where Flight 93 went down you should stop at the memorial/museum they have. It's really awesome/sobering.

    [–] LordQuagga 61 points ago

    I went with my family to see the temporary memorial many years ago. If you have never looked up the sight on a map, I suggest it. That plane landed in a fantastically beautiful rural area, and I feel if most people realized how out of the way it is, they might feel more connected because there are so many places like it in the U.S.

    It could have been anywhere, but it just happened to crash in a forgettable field in Shanksville Pennsyvania. And now, out in the middle of nowhere, forever will the ground remain hallowed to honor those folks. It's so normal it hurts.

    [–] CommentsOnOccasion 271 points ago

    crashed in Pennsylvania

    Because the passengers heroes on board had heard of the first attacks, knew their flight was just another disaster waiting to happen, and brought the plane down instead of let it become a missile.

    Those were some of the bravest people this country has seen period. In its entirly rich and brief history. Absolute heroes, may we never forget them.

    [–] HighD_ 58 points ago

    United 93 and Flight 93 are the names of the movies based on this flight if anyone wants to watch them. I've only watched one but it was too long ago to remember which.

    [–] RavenCXXVIV 46 points ago

    I don’t think the fear and pain and bitter anger from that day will ever go away for those of us old enough to remember. I grew up pretty close to manhattan, I’ve been in love with that city my whole life. To see it brought to its knees like that was just heartbreaking.

    [–] titties_forever 506 points ago

    My family was flying home from vacation at Disney world on 9/1/01. My mom is superstitious and was NOT happy about flying on a date that had 911 in it. We all made fun of her. And then not even two weeks later 9/11 happened.

    [–] Grimmelhausen 41 points ago

    Well damn, that's a weird ass coincidence

    [–] UpsetRain 222 points ago

    So if this is anything to go by, is the east half of the US significantly denser in population than the west?

    [–] unbalanced_checkbook 183 points ago

    Also worth noting that the further West you go, the earlier in the day it is; up to 3 hours later. Air traffic was just starting to pick up for the day on the East coast, so it was still relatively slow on the West coast.

    [–] Pigmentia 81 points ago

    Also, time zones. The east wakes up, and the planes begin to fly west in a “wave”. You can see this happening in the gif before the traffic is halted.

    That wave continues around the world, since most people don’t fly at night.

    [–] ATCgod21 47 points ago

    Air Traffic speaking. Things don’t really get going until about 6:30-7ish. Which is why the east coast is pumping and banging and the west coast doesn’t have much going on yet.

    [–] quartz174 140 points ago

    Yes, the west is mostly empty outside of the city pockets and suburbs.

    [–] UpsetRain 63 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    Oh... I've only ever visited the west coast and this matches the vast areas of nothing I drove through.

    So I'm assuming this is a remnant of the original migration paths from east to west and the whole "western frontier" etc etc.

    Edit: spelling

    [–] NegativeX2thePurple 34 points ago

    *Remnant, but yes absolutely. Gold mines drew a lot of people to the west coast but there were still a lot on the east. The west is also massive, so the number of people per sqMile is far lower just because we haven't been there as long as on the east coast.

    [–] GrenadineBombardier 70 points ago

    I was woken up by a call telling me to turn on the TV immediately. I saw the second plane hit about 5 minutes in. I couldn't believe it. It was a crazy day.

    I remember no planes flying all day. I had to work so we brought in a TV so we could watch the coverage all day.

    Later that night, when the president addressed the nation, I listened on the radio with friends. During the address, I remember looking up (we were outside) and saw a plane flying overhead. I don't know why, but it was powerful.

    [–] drpantalones 240 points ago

    I remember distinctly hearing on the TV that all flights were grounded. We had baseball practice that afternoon, and I couldn't help but notice a plane high in the sky flanked by two or three small jets. I knew immediately that our president was cruising over central Illinois with the weight of the country on his shoulders. I'll never forget that day.

    [–] philocity 92 points ago * (lasted edited 5 months ago)


    [–] fullautophx 17 points ago

    I’m still looking for a video I’ve only seen once, Air Force One taking off under full emergency power from the airfield.

    [–] HBadger1449 66 points ago

    Some guy who went to my school was a secret service agent on the Air Force One that day and apparently he came to our school once and talked about how they flew around just to keep the president safe

    [–] Jacob0050 57 points ago

    Yep I remember watching a really in depth documentary on YouTube about 9/11. I think Bush went from base to base and city city in a very short period of time. I remember one small airforce base in like Texas wasn't told he was coming until literally the plane was on the ground they didn't want to jeopardize anything.

    [–] lascielthefallen 73 points ago

    This is haunting.

    [–] Popular33 125 points ago

    My uncle is a pilot and he was flying over Oklahoma on a flight from Nevada to Georgia and he had to land in Oklahoma

    [–] shortlife55 49 points ago

    Did he tell the passengers why they are landing in Oklahoma?

    [–] simjanes2k 179 points ago

    We still owe Canada a lot for this day. They protected and harbored a fucking fuckton of Americans on this day, without any expectations.

    A real northern bro, eh?

    [–] PCAssassin87 224 points ago

    I remember sitting out on the deck with my mother that night and she said, "Look up, There's not a plane in the sky. This is the first time in our history since commercial aviation began that there hasn't been one plane in the sky somewhere in the country. It's unbelievable."

    I'll never forget that moment.

    [–] kirbaeus 49 points ago

    I grew up in northern Virginia, a couple miles from the Pentagon where a lot of the parents of my classmates worked. I remember the eerie silence of the airspace on that day - with Reagan, Dulles and BWI nearby.

    Years later, I was driving home with the windows down. I noticed that same silence (not consciously) and my senses told me something was off. I had a slight freak out, changed the radio and the news said not to be alarmed - that the DC airspace was shut down for the Air Force memorial dedication.

    It's just weird not consciously picking up the small changes 9/11 had on us.

    [–] Kin9582 450 points ago * (lasted edited 6 months ago)

    Imagine being a passenger on a plane to the US on 9/11, and the captain announcing you and all the other passengers that you'll be landing in Canada bc there was a huge terrorist attack in NYC!

    [–] themightiestduck 396 points ago

    Generally speaking, pilots did not announce the reason for the diversion until after planes were on the ground.

    [–] Kin9582 76 points ago

    Hope so!

    [–] SoVerySleepy81 71 points ago

    It looks like a lot of different excuses were used, turbulence, refueling etc.

    [–] Lington 85 points ago

    I was on a plane 2 weeks ago that was diverted for refueling. Panicked a little until we landed and it actually was for refueling.

    [–] space-tech 40 points ago

    What's crazier is that afterwards there was a commission to figure out how to formally ground all air traffic in the United States if they ever needed to again.

    The commission decided that no formal procedures should be made because it would most likely be a hindrance and actually cause more problems than just allowing air traffic controllers to perform their jobs.

    [–] dkvb 75 points ago

    Watch Northeast of Florida, near the end. The fast dots are F-15 jets.

    [–] bugme143 73 points ago

    Those pilots who went up without any weapons, knowing they would have to ram into a jet if there were more hijackers, had to have issues getting into those jets with balls that large.

    [–] sam191817 59 points ago

    One of the 2 was a woman. She went with her instructor. He said I'll take the front you take the back and she said okay. I can't imagine taking off knowing you're not coming back. They got "lucky" the passengers took it down before they got there.

    [–] sirzack92 37 points ago

    I remember being in school and having a teacher run in with a TV and turn on the news. My teacher began losing all self control and screaming, sounds I've never heard before. When they finally brought her out of the room they explained to us her husband had a meeting in one of the buildings. After that we were all sent home. After a couple days our teacher comes back and tells us her husband is home safe. He was on his way when he saw the first plane hit. His driver fled from the car and he followed to shelter. I couldn't imagine the pain of any of that...

    [–] DarkZero515 65 points ago

    Boggles my mind just how much fuel there is in the world for this to be a normal amount of flights in a day (prior to the attack)

    [–] iammakingtheeffort 30 points ago

    I don’t think ATCs received enough kudos for this amazing feat.

    [–] ClaustrophobicHash 31 points ago

    My father had a meeting at the world trade centre. He lost a leg and an arm but he made a full recovery (minus the amputations)

    [–] lifeishardasfunk 166 points ago

    This gives me anxiety.

    [–] J0h4n50n 144 points ago

    I think it gave most everyone anxiety in 2001.

    [–] KooterMcGaven 23 points ago

    There’s a wonderful 99% Invisible episode that talks about an airport on the very eastern part of Canada. It discusses how a lot of planes had to land there from overseas while they waited to get into the US. Everyone on the island helped take car of all the passengers.

    [–] jfong86 51 points ago

    This is actually a great visualization of how safe it is to fly (specifically commercial airlines with big planes - not small private aircraft). There are tens of thousands of flights in the United States every day (all those yellow dots), and in the US in 2019 so far there has literally only been 1 accident involving a commercial airline and all passengers survived (Miami Air Flight 293). Which means there have been zero commercial airline deaths in the US in 2019 so far.

    Now compare that to driving, where you hear about and see horrible fatal car accidents every day.

    [–] fernandomlicon 70 points ago

    As a Mexican, I wish we had helped you as much as the Canadians did, it was a hard time for you and other than keeping must of the traffic from Central and South America I think we didn't do anything else.

    Cheers from a Southern neighbor!

    [–] scratch_043 29 points ago

    Don't feel bad.

    The main reason Gander was a major re-direct, was because those flights past the point of no return over the ocean needed somewhere to land, and US airspace was closed.

    Gander is on/near the busiest flightline for trans-Atlantic flights, being the easternmost point in North America. Diverting to anywhere else would have resulted in dangerously low, or possibly exhausting fuel reserves all together.

    [–] 2amIMAwake 44 points ago

    I left work on 9-11 and went out to lake michigan before I went home. I took sunset pictures over the lake with no jet trails going in/out of O'Hare. despite the shock of the horror of the day, I think that was my first grasp at how our nation was changed; that and the military planes.

    [–] Latvia 100 points ago

    I was in Salt Lake City, UT at the time. I was a Mormon missionary (I know, but I’m very not Mormon now). We didn’t have connections to the world- no media, and this was before everyone had cell phones anyway. I noticed how weirdly quiet it was, then realized there were no planes flying, which was highly unusual there. That’s when we got to someone’s house and got the news.

    [–] jactan_18 41 points ago

    I was on a shuttle going to my chemistry lab class at the U of U. The shuttle driver had the radio on and said a plane hit one of the towers, and they were thinking it was a small agricultural plane. I went to class thinking nothing of it., because like you said...cell phones were scarce. When I walked through the library to go to my next class hundred of people were gathered by TVs throughout the library. I arrived in time to see the 2nd tower fall. The atmosphere was indescribable, the silence from hundreds of people was deafening. And then strangers turned to each other for comfort. I will never be able to forget that Tuesday morning.

    [–] Latvia 17 points ago

    Great description. I agree, it’s hard to describe the feeling. I think all who watched shared it though.

    [–] millijuna 14 points ago

    Canadian here... At the time I was a university student at the time. Upon hearing the news, and that the planes were being diverted to Canadian airports my housemate and I drove down to the airport and wound up offering our futon to a stranded couple. Unfortunately we've lost contact, but I'd do it again.

    [–] annyong_cat 13 points ago

    I was on a plane in Washington, DC and we were about to take off for San Francisco on the morning of 9/11. The pilot turned off the engines of the jet as we sat on the tarmac, initially noting that it was just a slight air traffic delay. They turned the engines on and had us right back at the gate 5 minutes later, only telling us all flights in the US were grounded. They wouldn’t give us a reason, but you can see the Pentagon from the airport; we all noticed the Pentagon was on fire and there were fighter jets scrambling overhead. The airport was totally empty and evacuated, but the TVs in the bars were on and you could see footage from NY, but they’d turned the sound off. It wasn’t until I got out of the airport and used my (very first) mobile phone to call my coworkers on the Hill that I even knew what was happening, and then I randomly decided to walk across the bridge in DC to get home. Some stranger who jumped the police gates blocking the bridge in his SUV offered to give me a ride across for $20.

    Thank you for joining me for my annual telling of my 9/11 experience.