9/11 in 8th grade (The Power of Love overcame, the Hatred)

high school with cherry blossom

I was a week into my 8th grade year at Francis C. Hammond Middle School in Alexandria, VA the school was right off the Seminary Road Exit of I-395 about 5 miles down the highway from the Pentagon. My parents were on a Canadian Cruise with my grandparents retirement community and my Dad's sister and her husband, so I was staying with my family friend from church Anne H.

The day started like any other day, we were in Anne's car heading to Hammond, school didn't start until 9:15 AM back then. We were listening to Elliot In The Morning on DC101 when he comes back with breaking news, that a plane had crashed into the tower of the World Trade Center. "What a terrible accident, the pilot must have had a heart attack" we said.

I was at my locker getting ready for the day when my English Teacher Ms. Conway ran out into the hall to my Civics Teacher Mr. Belefski's room, and told him to turn on the TV that a second plane had crashed into the World Trade Center and America was under attack. I made my way to band class, I was section leader of the Alto Saxophones, I don't remember if we had a tv in the classroom. Shortly before the Pentagon was hit we heard a plane flying low using I-395 as a guide to find the Pentagon. When the plane hit, we felt the explosion, and it felt like an earthquake.

The next class was French, one of my classmates told our teacher what had happened about the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and to turn on her tv.

We watched coverage for about 10-15 minutes, when the Principal Mrs. Clark made an announcement for all teachers to turn the tv's off because a lot of students had parents who worked in the Pentagon. I don't recall us doing a lot of work. Classes that stuck out that day were my Special Ed -Co Taught math class. A lot of students in that class were shaken up and asking questions. And my Civics teacher was a rebel and decided to leave his tv on and use this as a teaching oppurtunity. I remember just sitting in class watching the tv in shock.

I got a ride to my friend's house to await pickup from Anne, she got off work at 530 or 6, on the ride to Anne's house she answered every question I had.

It was that moment I knew I missed my parents, and my brothers. My brothers called me at Anne's house, Anne hugged and held and comforted me that night.

I felt the power of love overcome the power of hatred.


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