I will never forget where I was when I learned of the attacks on the World Trade Center.
I was in the most remote part of Oregon, in the Steens Mountain Wilderness, riding in the week-long 'Cycle Oregon' bike tour with 1,500 other cyclists.
It was overcast and cool as I and two friends made the daily morning trek from our tent to the massive breakfast tent. On the way, we noticed an odd sight, a group of cyclists crowded around the back of an SUV listening to the radio. People go on Cycle Oregon to get away from TV and radio and cell phones, but what was especially strange was that everyone was sitting silently.
We wandered over, and someone asked: Have you heard?
I listened in shock. At first I didn't understand. As the news sank in, I recoiled in a mix of horror, disbelief, anger, and fear.
At the time, I was the Internet site manager for a Portland TV station. But my first and all-consuming thought was that I needed to talk to my 7-year-old son back in Portland. Those 350 miles that separated us seemed like an infinite chasm. Out in the Alvord Desert, cell phones didn’t work, and there was already a line for the pay phone, as others cued up to connect with loved ones.
When I finally reached my son, I cried as we talked. At his age, all he understood was that some bad people had hurt some other people. But for me, everything had changed. In the instant of those attacks, our world had become a more dangerous place and now my son would grow up in a world where we could no longer feel safe from terror attacks, even on American soil. This would be his inheritance, and it made me weep as a father to know there was nothing I could do about it.
There are generations of Americans who will never forget where they were when JFK was shot. For me and those of my generation, I imagine that the events of 9/11 are the same.
We invite you to share where you were on 9/11 and how you were affected. Just click on the COMMENTS link below to share your story, and read the comments of others.
Internet Site Manager, KGW.com