Where were you career pilots


Well-Known Member
Just a thought and dont want to touch any nerves anywhere....but would some of you pro-guys mind sharing where you were on Sept 11 2001 when all planes were grounded. I would find it interesting to hear about those who were aloft and forced to get down asap.....just something i would find interesting. thanks
I put out about six newsletters during a 7 day forced BOS "vacation" but I don't have them stored anywhere. Alas, lost in cyberspace.
Doug, what was it like in the cockpit? were you aloft when the word was put out to get down? alot of confusion?
Actually, I was just waking up in BOS when my cellphone rang and Kristie had told me that some aircraft got lost and hit the world trade center. I popped on the tv just as the second plane hit. I thought it was the footage of the first lost plane, but I couldn't figure out why the other building was on fire.

I wasn't in the air, but a lot of people that I know were, one was flying down the river on a downwind to LGA and literally saw the first impact.

But I think you're looking for something more 'from the horses mouth' so I'll shut my mouth!
Thats good stuff...well, not good, but fascinating. I can only imagine the confusion of being in the air and having that happen. I am pretty sure that guys who were diverted to that island had no clue....dont ya think.
My roommate (who works in ops at Eagle) called me at 8:20 and told me a plane had hit the WTC. I wondered why she was waking me up to tell me about some idiot flying his 150 into a building, I'm not very, umm, alert in the morning so it took me a while to figure out something important was going on. She got frustrated, told me to "just get your a*s out of bed and turn on CNN" so I did. And later wished I hadn't, as the reality hit that two of those planes were 'mine' (AA). I got on the company comptuter ASAP, but the crew lists had already been blocked. Standard procedure, immediately following an accident/incident the company locks out all information regarding the involved flights (out/off/on/in times, crew lists, pax lists, ac number etc).
Thankfully I was at my apartment with my boyfriend (now husband), but I was really nervous until the crew lists were released. I ended up not knowing any of them personally, but it's very sad to lose 17 of your own.
My father was flying a 763 flight from DFW to ATL that morning. During the flight, they got word that NY Center was closed due to what turned out to be the first impact. No big deal, they were going to ATL, but it could effect the later flight he was flying to BOS. Then they heard that Washington was closed, and that all aircraft were going to have to land within a reasonable time. Their initial plan was to continue to ATL, as they were somewhere over Alabama. That plan was amended when they were told that they needed to get down to any appropriate airport immediately. Overall, a slightly nervous situation for the crew, but they really had no idea regarding the gravity of the situation until they were on the ground. They diverted to Birmingham, Alabama where they spent the next 5 days. As a sidenote, Birmingham doesn't have equipment to unload the large cargo bins used on the 763. They had to hand unload some stuff, including a large amount of cash for a courier who was flipping out about getting himself and his money the hell out of Dodge.
As a sidenote, Birmingham doesn't have equipment to unload the large cargo bins used on the 763

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The airport does, or should I say UPS does, since they handle our A300 and B757 on a daily basis in BHM. Delta probably didn't want to spend the $$ to rent our equipment.
I had just landed at CVG and was walking my passengers into the FBO when the TV was turned on. Someone said an airplane accidently hit the WTC, I said it was no accident look at the clear blue sky. Moments later as I was watching what I thought was a replay the second airplane hit. After a few minutes of disbelief I went up to the customer service rep, rented a car and a two hotel rooms for a week. My copilot said he thought we were leaving for FL that afternoon and I told him we weren't leaving CVG for a while, in hindsite I was very fortunate to have gotten a car and 2 rooms as within the hour every car and room were sold out in the Cincinnatti area.

We finally got out of CVG Friday afternoon. I did place a call to Dept. of Transportation Secratary's office in Washington DC to complain that the safest operators out there were still the only ones not allowed to fly. In my opionion Corporate flight dept. are the safest because we know our passengers by name. I even asked for a disspensation to allow my copilot and I to leave CVG for home because we were both National Guard Pilots and needed to get back home to our units because they were on alert, no luck.
I was working at Flight Safety Academy at the time. I was in the microsoft lab playing on the internet when someone said that an airplane had hit the WTC. A few minutes later the internet crashed (apparently it was routed through the WTC somehow since it was down for several weeks after). My first thought was that it was an accident like the B25 that hit the Empire State Building.

A few minutes later, someone else came in and said that two planes had hit the WTC and that the Pentagon was on fire as well. At that point it hit me that we were under attack.

On a break, I went down to the FSA Cafe and watched the coverage on CNN. One thing that sticks in my mind about that is that, at the time, FSA had a contract to train Saudi students. Several of them were in the Cafe and seemed happy enough that I was concerned that they were going to incite some of the Americans to start a fight.

Over the next couple of days, the FBI crawled all over the campus and interviewed the Saudis, who were all cleared of any involvement. As the revelations of the hijacker's training started coming, I was surprised to see how many nearby familiar airports were in the news.

Very quickly after that, the anthrax attacks started just down the road in Lantana (about 100 miles away).
The airport does, or should I say UPS does, since they handle our A300 and B757 on a daily basis in BHM. Delta probably didn't want to spend the $$ to rent our equipment.

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Yep, should've clarified...Delta didn't have the goods for a day or two. I'm assuming they borrowed from somebody else on the field, like UPS, once the dust settled.
I was on a layover in Knoxville, TN. I had my wife with me. It was about 8:55am when I turned on the television to see the news of the new day. Saw a picture of the first WTC building on fire. Figured it was just that, bad fire. Reporters were claiming that an airplane had flown into the building. I was like "yeah right, some dumb member of the public on the ground seeing things" I almost turned it back off when I saw something hit the second tower and fire erupted there. From that moment on there was no doubt in my mind what had just happened.

The phone rang. It was a friend of mine. He had just come out of the delivery room where his wife had given birth to their first baby. It was the strangest feeling. My eyes were watching evil manifest itself on the TV. My ears were hearing about the miracle of a new birth. I did not have the heart to tell the new dad what I was watching on TV. I did not want his moment of joy to be clouded by the cowardly actions of terrorists.