Tuesday, February 26, 2008

A Somber 15th Anniversary

It's one of those days I will never, ever forget.

I was working for a company called TRIP, which stood for Tower Records Import Product. I was working that day in the Village, at the now-defunct Tower store on Broadway and E. 4th Street. I had just gone to lunch after working the morning in the store doing some inventories. It was a cold late February day in 1993, and some snow flurries were falling. I walked over to a deli on Waverly Place to pick up something. I walked out of the store and was heading down Broadway when I heard some police and fire sirens off in the distance. I looked up in the sky towards Lower Manhattan and I saw smoke in the sky. I knew something really serious was going on down there.

I got back to the office and put on a radio and I heard that there was an explosion at the World Trade Center. At first I didn't know what that was all about, but soon the news filtered out that a bomb had gone off in a parking garage beneath the North Tower. It was an act of terrorism that these shores had never seen before.

When I got home I heard that six people had lost their lives, and that over 1,000 people had been injured, mostly from smoke inhalation, and in the rush to get out.

It was a day all of us in America felt vulnerable. But that feeling would soon fade.

But it would return, 8 1/2 years later.

The photo I've enclosed in this post is from the memorial that was built in 1995 for the six victims of the 1993 bombing. Just a small piece with the name "John" survived after the 9/11 attacks. (That was from John DiGiovanni, one of the six victims.)

Please say a prayer for those victims lost 15 years ago today, as well as the 2,749 who perished at the World Trade Center eight years later. (The terrible irony for me was the person I was doing the inventories for that morning at Tower in 1993 was one of TRIP's sales reps, my friend Joyce, who lost her life at the WTC on September 11, 2001.)

The following words were from the inscription from the memorial for the victims of February 1993:

"On February 26, 1993, a bomb set by terrorists exploded below this site. This horrible act of violence killed innocent people, injured thousands, and made victims of us all."

May God rest their souls.


Peter N said...

Again, John, so well written, so well said. And thank you for that.
And yesterday (Monday) would have been George Harrison's 65th birthday. He is missed. You take care...Peter

The Omnipotent Q said...

Thank you Peter. These last couple of days are rather sad. I can't believe George was 65 yesterday.

God bless him, and all the WTC victims.

Peter N said...

You're welcome. I have something to look forward to in about...um...54 hours...Bruce & the E Street Band in Hartford, and it's still hard for me to believe!! But you're right...these days have been harsh. I always try to look for the bright side with everything, or I'd go nuts! Not there yet, but you know this. I am aware of so much. Thanks for every word you write. I MEAN THAT.hsz

Be well...Pete

Michael Leggett said...

I was downtown @ 42 Bway, when there was a flickering of lights. It was reported that there was a small electrical fire in the WTC:

Then I was ordered to ferry some Supervisors & Chiefs to the Testing Station of Weights & Measures;

I got out before the Bridges were closed, back in 1993.