It is nearly impossible to believe that a decade and a half has passed since al-Qaeda wiped out 2,977 innocent souls on September 11, 2001.
As I recall this horrid occasion, I think specifically of those whom I knew who were killed. My cousin, local artist Michael Richards. My apartment-floor mate, financier Avnish Patel. NYPD officer John William Perry, who was at One Police Plaza filing his retirement papers that very day. And twelve of 27 firefighters at Ladder 13, the firehouse around the corner from where I live. May they and the others all rest in peace.
I also remember the radio interview that I did that morning with KSFO-AM. We originally were scheduled to discuss slavery reparations. Obviously, that topic was abandoned as swiftly as it should have been. Even though far more momentous matters were under way, the station decided to put me on air.
I told the hosts and their listeners in San Francisco what I saw at about 8:45 that morning: the silver belly of an American Airlines jet flying about 500 feet over my apartment building. The roar was loud enough to trigger car alarms on the street below.
For a glimpse of that day’s chaos, which I hope this country witnesses never again, please click below.