9/11 remains the worst foreign attack on American soil. The following images recall the horrific series of events that would unfold on September 11, 2001.
September 11, 2021 marks twenty years since the day Americans – and the world – will never forget. Those of us who survive will always remember where we were when we saw what was happening. When our families were lost. Our friends, our colleagues. Our loved ones and the nation’s finest.
It is a day many of us do not wish to revisit, but history holds firm, as does the legacy of those we lost.
7:59 AM to 8:42 AM: Four Flights are Hijacked by Al Qaeda. Twin Towers Stand Proud.
On the morning of 9/11, four flights bound for California would fall to Al Qaeda terrorists. Two would leave Boston. One left Washington, D.C. Another from Newark, N.J. None would make their destination.
At this point in time, the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center still stand proudly in the Financial District of Lower Manhattan, New York City, New York.
8:46 AM: American Airlines Flight 11 Hits North Tower
Al Qaeda hijackers crash American Airlines Flight 11 and its Boston passengers directly into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 AM.
9:03 AM: United Airlines Flight 175 Hits South Tower
Less than 17 minutes later, terrorists would fly United Airlines Flight 175 and all those aboard from Boston directly into the South Tower.
Once the second plane hit hundreds more perished, the U.S. became aware that this was a deliberate, terrorist attack.
9:05 AM: President George W. Bush is Told ‘America is Under Attack’
The morning of September 11, President George W. Bush is in Sarasota, Florida reading to students of Emma Booker Elementary School. At 9:05 AM, Bush’s Chief of Staff, Andrew Card, tells the President that “America is under attack.”
9:37 AM: American Airlines Flight 77 Crashes into The Pentagon
Thirty minutes later, American Airlines Flight 77 and all 64 passengers aboard from Washington Dulles International Airport crash into The Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia.
The capture above shows the moment the plane hit via a campus security camera. The public would not see this image until May 16, 2006.
At 9:42 AM, the Federal Aviation Administration would ground all flights in the U.S.
At 9:45 AM, all personnel would begin evacuating both the White House and the U.S. Capitol, The Wall Street Journal recounts.
9:59 AM: The South Tower Collapses
Right before 10:00 AM on 9/11, the World Trade Center’s South Tower collapses. Immediately, the White House requests jet fighter escorts for Air Force One. Fighter combat air control takes over the skies above Washington, D.C.
10:03 AM: United Airlines Flight 93 Crashes in Pennsylvania, Preventing 9/11 Capitol Building Destruction
At 10:03 AM, United Airlines Flight 93 crash-lands in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Passengers aboard would fight hijackers, forcing the plane down into a field. 33 passengers and 7 crew members would perish – saving this plane from making the destination its four 9/11 terrorist hijackers intended: The United States Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.
Today, several memorials mark the crash site and those lost. A stone, seen above, marks the exact location of Flight 93’s impact.
10:28 AM: The North Tower Collapses
At 10:28 AM, the World Trade Center’s North Tower would collapse, causing further mass destruction in Manhattan.
Toxic dust and fumes would overtake the city. Tens of thousands of surviving New Yorkers would inhale, later causing cancer and debilitating health issues.
11:02 AM: 9/11 Evacuation of Lower Manhattan and Rescue of Survivors Begin
Led by the U.S. Coast Guard, over 500,000 people begin evacuating Manhattan at 11:02 AM.
343 members of the New York City Fire Department would perish during 9/11.
At 5:20 PM, World Trade Center Building 7 collapses due to fire and debris from the Twin Towers.
2,996 People Perish in 9/11 Attacks
In total, 2,996 victims would perish in the 9/11 attacks.
Above, a FDNY firefighter looks up into the photos of those lost as the Tribute Center opens on Sept. 6, 2006.
Thank you to the 9/11 Memorial Museum for making this information public.