Magazine article Editor & Publisher

9/11: Before Everything Changed

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

9/11: Before Everything Changed

Article excerpt

Everything changed that day. Perhaps that's why millions of us still retain, filed away, the front page of our local paper for Sept. 12, 2001, carrying a banner headline that reads something like "America Under Attack" or "New Day of Infamy." But the true impact of what happened hit me harder than it had for quite some time while examining a routine, even dull, front page from the day before -- the morning of the terror attacks.

It happened because my son in film school was preparing to shoot a 10-minute movie, a fictional narrative based on a family in our upstate town who lost their father on 9/11. For many years my son played on a Little League team with one of the boys, and I coached with the dad all that time. The film opens on the morning of the tragedy with a scene of the father heading off to work, and my son wondered if I could help him locate a paper from that day.

This proved to be no easy task. Who saved that morning's paper? After quite a few calls and e-mails to New York area newspapers, to no avail, I finally convinced a gracious New York Times staffer to send me a PDF of Page One. Then I printed it out, nearly full-size, to send to my son.

Holding it in my hands, it produced a shiver. There was the weather forecast in the upper right corner, accurately predicting the memorable day as "mainly sunny ... high 79." Then it occurred to me that I would have read that very edition on the train to New York City that morning, speeding down the Hudson as one of the hijacked planes flew directly overhead, followed minutes later by a conductor announcing over the P.A. system, "You won't believe this folks, but a plane has hit one of the World Trade Center towers." I looked out the window and saw smoke far down the river. Then upon arrival at Grand Central, the conductor announced that the second tower had been struck. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.