Even though it's been 8 years.... I haven't blogged about this yet. Mainly because 8 years isn't enough time to heal a raw wound. My expressions of grief and remembrance have been private. Mostly posting on Boston University's Remembrance website and through prayer. But today I decided I could post this and feel OK about it....
2,996 people were killed on American soil that day. I remember where I was and what I was doing like it was 10 minutes ago. I lived on the 1oth floor of University Tower in College Station, TX. I was headed to my Print Journalism Class. I had JUST gotten out of the shower and was standing in my dorm room with a towel on my head. I turned on the news as I do every morning and suddenly my entire world changed. BREAKING NEWS..... A Single Plane had hit the World Trade Center Tower. I stood there, losing all concept of time, not caring if I was late for class. I picked up the phone and called my Nathan and told him to turn on the news. Then I called my mom and dad. My dad answered and I told him a Plane hit the World Trade Center. He too, was shocked...At that time they thought it was a single engine plane and it was a horrible accident. News crews stood below showing us the damage..... Then you hear screaming and the cameras zoom in on another plane. One headed directly for the second tower. I watched in horror as the second plane smashes into the second tower on live TV.
This was no accident. We were under attack.
I couldn't breath, I couldn't move......
It took everyone ounce of will in my body to get ready for class. I couldn't miss. I was perfect student. That wasn't an option.....
Instead of the riding my bike that day, I took the bus. I felt sick and I wanted to listen to the news on the bus. Everyone was somber on the bus and we all listened. 4 stops later I got out at the Reed-McDonald building and stormed downstairs to the Basement. This is where the Battalion office is.... Texas A&M's Newspaper. What better place to get the news?? I huddled around the TV's with everyone else who worked there.... Suddenly we witnessed the tower FALL on live TV. I thought I was going to throw up. I couldn't watch anymore. It didn't feel real. It felt like I was watching a perfect Hollywood action/horror movie. Every detail of the movie was perfect. It couldn't be. There is NO way.
I left, I went to class, but class was cancelled. I decided to walk home. I needed to clear my head. No one was out. Those that were kept their heads down. No eye contact.
I had to work that afternoon in the leasing office at the Tower. I couldn't just sit still in my room doing nothing. I went to work early. When I got there everyone had the TV on they were watching the coverage. I sat with them.
Within an hour the real Human element to this catastrophe started to scroll on the bottom of the screen. Names of people identified to be dead on the planes. This much was clear. They had boarded the plane, the planes hit the towers and there was no way anyone on the planes could survive the impact and the heat. Identifying those in the buildings would take a lot longer.
I watched as the names scrolled in a yellow bar..... Then I saw it:
Lisa Frost, 22. Rancho Santa Margarita, CA United Flight 175.
My heart literally stopped. I knew a Lisa Frost from Rancho Santa Margarita. She was 22. I was 22. Could it be my friend?
The Answer is Yes, It was.
Lisa Frost was 22 years old, and a recent graduate of Boston University. She earned degrees in communications and business hospitality, and was a valedictorian (summa cum laude) at graduation.
While at BU, Lisa was dedicated to helping others. She worked as a student advisor and also a peer counselor. She also studied abroad in Sydney, Australia. She was intelligent, fun and always did the right thing. She was the type that could be partying on Saturday night only to ACE her exams on Monday.
Lisa Frost was, without a doubt, a blessing to this world. On September 11, 2001, she boarded United Airlines Flight 175. She was flying home, to visit her parents in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, and then was starting a job in San Francisco.
She never saw them. She was murdered by terrorists.
I think about her all the time. I think about the lives she touched and the impact she made. I think about her family. Her dad, Tom who has dedicated his life to keeping her memory alive by speaking on her behalf and encouraging people to be like her....
I struggled for years, knowing I saw that plane hit that second tower on the live news. Knowing I saw her plane moments before she died, as she took her last breath. What happened on that plane? Did she know what was happening? Was she scared? Thinking about it now brings on HUGE waves of anxiety.... So much so I need to bring this post to a close....
Please keep her family in your thoughts today, as we remember all the lives that were lost that day. We will NEVER forget