Here are my memories of that day:
None of us will ever forget where we were on Sept. 11, 2001.
I was still asleep when my brother Karl called me to tell me that a plane had just crashed into one of the towers of the World Trade Center. I jumped out of bed and turned on the TV, tuning in to the Today show on NBC. Matt Lauer and Katie Couric looked just as stunned and confused as I was. We were obviously thinking the same thing: What a horrible accident! Unaware of what was still to come, I kept thinking, "How are they ever going to repair that building?"
When the report came in that a plane had crashed into the Pentagon, I started getting really scared. I called my dad, who was at work at Abbott Laboratories. I was in tears on the phone as I asked him, "Dad, what is going on?" I knew he had no answer for me, but whenever something bad is happening, I always turn to my dad. He seemed to be as scared as I was.
I watched in absolute disbelief as one tower fell, and then the other. I cried and prayed for the people who were still in those towers when they came crashing down. I vividly remember yelling at the TV, "There are people in there!"
In the days and weeks that followed, I interviewed local residents about how they felt. I attended both organized and impromptu candlelight vigils. I displayed an American flag in my car. I had never felt such a sense of patriotism.