As a Florida personal injury lawyer, everyday I speak with current or prospective clients that have, one way or the other, fallen victim to tragedy. Whether a person is involved in a car accident, slip and fall, or construction site accident — I can typically proceed with a certain course of action that will hopefully enable my injured client to recover damages. While the system we have is not perfect, it is the best we have to offer for our injured clients. The tragedy that occurred on 9/11 is in a class of its own, and no legal action or damages can repair the pain and suffering that this country endured on that fateful day.
Many of you are well aware that I focus my posts primarily on construction site accidents and construction site injuries. However, on this somber day, 9/11, I believe it is necessary to remember the 3,000 people who perished from the terrorist attack on our country that day. Yet, I believe I speak for everyone when I say that we all suffered that day, and we are reminded every year on this date of the tremendous sacrifice that our troops, law enforcement officers, and firefighters make every day to keep us safe.
I, like many others, can recall exactly where I was, what I was doing, and what was going through my mind on the morning of 9/11. It was an experience that I remember vividly and will be etched in my memory for all my life.
The morning was 9/11/01. The time was just before 9AM. I was a senior at East Brunswick High School in New Jersey and sitting in second period. Class was just about over, so my teacher allowed us to put on the television for the final 10 minutes — like she had done so many times before. However, when we turned on the TV, nearly every channel was covering a “plane crash at the World Trade Center.” My initial thought was: “Wow. How can a plane get so sidetracked that it crashes into a huge skyscraper?”
The live footage that my entire class was watching was focused on the first tower that was hit. The fire and flames were out of control, and the smoke was darker than I had ever seen. While watching this live feed of the burning tower, I noticed another plane come into the frame and become hidden for a moment behind the tower. A split second later — the second tower was hit and a large explosion engulfed the sky. At this point, I knew that this was no accidental plane crash — those planes were undoubtedly hijacked and used as kamikaze jets circa World War II. While watching this live, I do not recall a single word being uttered by any of my classmates, nor my teacher. Moments later, the bell rang for us to go to our third period class.
Walking through the narrow crowded hallways of East Brunswick High School that day was a surreal experience. Seeing my classmates and teachers literally running through the hallways frantic was a scene out of a movie. That entire day I felt like I was under water and simply could not speak or be my normal self. I did not know how to react. That was truly a day that will be imprinted in my mind and history books forever.
Let me stress that this anniversary should not be the only day that the victims, their families, fallen police officers and firefighters are remembered. Every single day they should be remembered.
By: Brandon Stein