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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Breathe (08/19/10)

TITLE: September 11 from South Africa
By Leonie Stanley


‘You have to come and watch this’ I hear my dad calling from the television lounge. ‘Dad, you know I only returned from my business trip yesterday and I have loads to catch up on!’ I reply. ‘Okay I understand but an aeroplane has just flown into the World Trade Centre!’
Within seconds I am standing in the television lounge next to my dad staring in disbelieve at the television screen. It is impossible, it just can’t be the truth. There is no ways for an aircraft to fly into the World Trade Centre building. This must be some trick photography, … please let it be some trick photography.
Legs shaking I decide to sit down without blinking, in the fear of missing something on the screen. The scene is played repeatedly but my brain can’t comprehend what it is witnessing. I mutter the same words over and over, ‘It can’t be. It is impossible. This is America we are talking about. Things like this don’t happen to America.’ Silently I am praying for the break in the story and some smiling presenter popping onto the screen informing us about the release of a new movie, or something. Please don’t tell me an aeroplane collided into the World Trade Centre.
It is all over. It is true. Heartache runs wild through my body, tears are rolling down my cheeks and I can’t seem to breathe. I choke on the words, terrorist attack in the USA, thousands of people have lost their lives today. Never in my life have I experienced such a sense of fear and panic. How will they get to all the trapped people, what about their families? How do they breathe in the mess hanging in the air? This has turned into the saddest day in my life.
Mayhem is plastered all over television, the newspapers are over flowing with the horror news. South Africa has come to a standstill in the hours and days after September 11. There is a hushed silence hanging in the air. What will happen next? Are we vulnerable in any way? We are now of the opinion that if it can happen to America it can happen to anyone.
It is close to 10 years since September 11 and I still follow all the programmes and documentaries featuring on television and with every viewing the same emotions return. The absolute raw heartache spread across the faces of the families left behind has the tears welling up in my eyes.
God please bring peace to these hurting people. Wrap them in Your arms and hold them close. They need You God.

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This article has been read 337 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/26/10
You're absolutely right, just the mention of that day brings back the images that are imprinted on my brain forever. It was nice to see it from a slightly different POV. Next time make sure you have someone proofread for you and double-space between the paragraphs to make it easier to read. All in all you did a wonderful job with the descriptions and emotions.
AnneRene' Capp08/27/10
As I read your account of your well described emotions, it brought back my own personal, moment by moment playback of this horrific event which was similar to yours. It did my heart good to see it through the eyes of another, from a different country, showing so much love and compassion for not only the victims, but America as well. Thank you!

Charla Diehl 08/30/10
Thank you for your prayers and sharing what you experienced on this historic day.
Betty Castleberry09/12/10
God bless you for sharing what someone from another nation experienced that day. So many times we Americans only hear how much other countries hate us. In the end, we are all children of God. Thank you for caring.
Edy T Johnson 09/13/10
Dittos to all the above comments. You brought the experience of that day back so vividly to my mind that you moved me to tears. That was the week of my niece's wedding. If you're on facebook, look me up and I'll direct you to Becka's recent reflection on her experiences nine years ago. Thank you so much for your caring heart. You write well, dear gal!