At 8:43 a.m., it was unthinkable. Three minutes later, it was reality.
September 11, 2001 started as a normal day for the people of Manhattan. Leaving Building Seven of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m., businesswoman Jodi Graber Pratt heard the roar of massive engines and felt the air pressure increase directly over her head—a split second before the North Tower was ripped open by the first of two planes that would hit the World Trade Center that day, shattering the domestic peace and safety Americans took for granted. Jodi ran for her life as chunks of concrete rained from the sky.
And that was only the beginning.
Imprisoned within the city for several excruciating days, she found herself living in an alternate United States, where assumptions about security, safety, and freedom were suspended. Despair gripped New York and the rest of the country, and terrorism became more than something that happened to other people in other countries.
She also found herself rethinking her privileges and responsibilities as an American.
Experience the first moments of 9/11 through the eyes of someone who lived through them, then struggled to recall and evaluate them, looking for the real questions: how to return America's focus to its traditional values, ideals and democracy? How to find and promote men and women of character, intelligence, humility and ability to build the necessary government? How—and when—to begin?