It's the ‘where were you day?' Similar to the death of Princess Diana and as my mother recalls the assignation of JFK. It's a point in time where we can all remember where we were, how we heard the news and what we were doing. The events are so large that emotions are felt all over the planet. Most of the world (ok let's say the first world) will recall that fateful day 17 years ago. When four organised and coordinated terrorist attacks led by the now famous Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda changed the world, as we knew it. On that fateful day, four planes were taken down, two landmark buildings tumbled to the ground, and another, The Pentagon, the very symbol of America's Military and Defence capabilities was catastrophically damaged. Most significantly and heartbreaking were the 2996 innocent people who were killed and over 6000 injured as a result of these atrocities.
Getting on a plane for all of us would never be the same again. Terrorist activities had come to our front door, and we were scared. The western world had a new enemy, and its name was Osama Bin Laden and all he stood for. I spoke to a friend today who said she was in South Africa waiting to take a plane to London when word began to trickle through about the attacks. Her aircraft was the only one to land in London. The airports after that were shut down and all flights cancelled. It was groundhog day. She said the whole plane was drunk including the flight attendants as they thought they were going down just like the others had that day.
For me, all I remember is being in my bedroom in Sydney when my dad walked into my room saying: ‘something terrible has happened in the United States' and he switched on the television. It looked like a movie was on, but it couldn't have been as it was early morning. Almost too horrible to watch, I stared at the television as coverage unfolded and the words ‘Live' streamed across the bottom of the screen. I'll never forget it. Each year on this date I recall that morning and I think of the innocent lives lost, and I hope for a brighter day.
Clare Sultmann is a wife, mother of 3 and the founder of Dear Molly.
As a survivor of a catastrophic accident, former barrister at