9/11 still affects students today

By Shannon Perry (Whetstone Staff Writer)

Fifty somber professors and students congregated and reflected in Parker Library on Sept. 12 to attend the opening of a photo exhibit and pay tribute to those who lost their lives because of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

On that date, 19 terrorists hijacked four planes. At 8:46 a.m., Flight 11 crashed into the World Trade Center North Tower, and by 9:03 a.m., Flight 175 crashed into the World Trade Center South Tower. At 9:38 a.m., Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. At 10:10 a.m., Flight 77 crashed in Pennsylvania. By 10:28 a.m. both towers had collapsed.

Students said they still found the event hard to believe.

“Ten years later and I still can’t believe it happened,” said junior Heather Payne.

The event still evokes fear.

“9/11 has left me concerned about my safety at times,” said junior Marissa Hayes.

Photos of the destruction that happened in New York were hung on the walls of Parker Library alongside firsthand accounts from firefighters in New York.

Thomas Hamsord’s testimony of the day was displayed for students to read.

“It started coming down,” he said. “We ran just there. The building just came down.”

Students recalled how worried they were about their families at the time.

“My father worked in Manhattan, and was close to where it happened,” said senior Raven Nowell.

Magazines, books and a photomontage were also on display for students and faculty to view.

Dr. Mike Nielsen, chair of Wesley’s Media Arts department, played an original harp composition, “Falling and Rising to the Occasion,” to honor those impacted by the event event. While he played, professors and students viewed the photomontage behind him.

Although he could not attend the opening of the exhibit he created, Joe Mullan, the exhibit designer and coordinator and an adjunct professor of photography, intended for the exhibit to show the devastation of that day and to help the viewer see it from the eyes of the photojournalist.

“This display really lets you in on what happened that day,” said junior Tanyetta Sanders. “Granted you see photos on the news, but being able to look at the photos up close gives you a clearer vision of the magnitude of this destruction.”