As we mark the tenth anniversary of the September 11 attacks on the United States, frequent NR contributors and other friends remember that morning.
RALPH KINNEY BENNETT
I was in my office in Washington when my secretary came to the door and told me to turn on the television. I was soon transfixed by the horror unfolding on the screen. I bowed my head at my desk and began to pray for all those in the World Trade Center towers and the hijacked airplanes. As the realization that this might be a general attack involving airplanes began to grow, my mind began scanning the names of friends who I knew flew frequently. I thought of David Beamer, a fellow elder in my church, who often traveled on business. How many more planes had been commandeered? Perhaps he was aboard one. I whispered a prayer for Dave. It was not until the next day, in a throat-catching phone call, that I learned Dave’s son, Todd Beamer, was aboard the “fourth plane,” United Flight 93. It soon became known that Todd was one of those passengers who apparently attacked the terrorists in the cockpit, thus thwarting their plans by bringing the plane down in the western-Pennsylvania mountains not far from my hometown.
— Ralph Kinney Bennett retired from the Washington bureau of The Reader’s Digest as an assistant managing editor.
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