Photo by Bruce Doll of Lowell.
Where were you on 9/11 in 2001?
By Emma Palova
I was reporting on the finance committee of the Ionia County Board of Commissioners that Tuesday morning.
The treasurer read a boring roll of numbers.
All of a sudden the county administrator, who was sitting behind the computer, gasped and held his breath. He turned the screen toward us.
I ran up front to look at the surrealistic picture. It was the inferno of the Twin Towers collapsing, the flames, the blaze and the billowing smoke with sunshine on top of it all.
I looked at the administrator and back at the screen trying to understand what was happening.
“We’re at war,” he repeated the words of the broadcasting station.
We all left the Ionia Courthouse building early and scared.
It was pure fear not knowing what was going on.
I can still feel my skin crawling, as I broke into cold sweat running one block down Main Street in the dead silence of the downtown.
My camera was dangling on my side. I felt like I didn’t know what I was running away from or where I was headed.
I don’t think I’ve ever had that kind of a feeling in my life. It was creepy. It was everything rolled into that one moment.
But, the art of self-preservation prevailed.
Back at the Ionia Sentinel Standard newsroom, we all watched the news coverage.
Yes, it was the beginning of hell. And no one knew when it was going to end, how and where.
To quote the next day papers:
“It was a day of infamy.”
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