In 2001, I was a cast member in the Original Los Angeles production of The Lion King directed by Tony winner and Oscar Nominee Julie Taymor. At the same time, I decided to train for the Honolulu Marathon to raise money for Aids Project Los Angeles.
Once a week, myself and some runners would meet in Griffith Park for one of our practice runs. On September 11th at 8:46 am, one of the girls’ phone went off. On the other end, was someone telling her a plane hit the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City. A few moments later, another call saying that a plane had also hit the Pentagon. My father was a shuttle driver at the Pentagon, so I panicked and turned back to get to my car where my phone was.
While desperately reaching out to call my Dad, an Aunt phoned informing me that he was OK. My attention then turned to an actress friend of mine, whose husband worked in the World Trade Center. They hadn’t been married very long and she was somewhere between 6-7 months pregnant with their second child.
Extremely concerned about her, I repeatedly phoned to reach her, when I finally did, my fears were confirmed. Her husband was working in the Twin Towers that morning and had not been found.
This is the story that millions of Americans would tell about their loved ones on that day. Very few Americans survived those terrorists attacks that day and numerous first responders lost their lives as well. Many who were in the vicinity and exposed to ash and other toxins in the air that day have been diagnosed with Cancer among other life threatening disease.
With my birthday falling on September 16th, I am reminded of this American tragedy whether I want to remember or not. I recall it as being the day my Dad nearly died, the whole firehouse I would pass on my way to half-hour call perished, the manager/friend whose husband perished and the dear friend whose husband perished among thousands of others.
It is a day in American history that will not and should not EVER be forgotten. May those who perished rest in peace and may their loved ones receive and be blessed with all of our prayers and love for eternity.
Here are some films,documentaries and real time news coverage of that day. PLEASE BE WARNED THAT THE FOOTAGE IS GRAPHIC and DISTRUBING…