Even though the semester had started just a few weeks prior, I knew it was unlike my German professor to be late for class.
If I could drag myself out of bed at 8:30 a.m. (way too early in college world) and show up on time, then so could my professors. No one was wasting anyone’s time. Especially precious sleeping time. And Dr. Reynolds always upheld his end of the bargain.
So when I arrived to my morning class at Longwood University in Farmville, VA, on Sept. 11, 2001, and found the door locked, I was a little annoyed. Where was my professor? Why was he late?
My classmates began showing up, too. They checked the door, wondered aloud where Dr. Reynolds was, looked for a note about class being canceled and found nothing.
“If your professor doesn’t show up in the first 15 minutes of the class, you’re allowed to leave,” advised one of the upperclassmen to us freshmen.
We all looked at our watches. Five minutes to go.
Just then, Dr. Reynolds arrived. He told us something terrible had happened: A plane had crashed into the World Trade Center.
We were shocked at what we thought was a horrible accident. But seeing as it didn’t affect us directly, we went on with class as scheduled.
Throughout the rest of the day, we all learned what had actually happened. We learned about the second plane. We learned that it wasn’t an accident. We watched President George W. Bush’s statement on TV. We worried for our friends whose parents worked at the Pentagon. We worried we would go to war.
All of us remember where we were or what we were doing when we heard about the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Share your story in our comments section below.
Randy and Elizabeth Sullivan Remember Sept. 11, 2001 (2011)