Every time I travel by air, I think about the first few time I flew after 9-11.
The first time I flew after 9-11 was in November of the same year. I was headed to Dallas, TX for a business trip, and my flight took off early in the morning. While in flight, Flight 587 took off out of New York bound for the Dominican Republic, and crashed in Queens, NY, killing all 260 passengers. Although it was subsequently determined to be an accident, when it first went down, the people of New York and even the rest of the country weren’t so sure. Being in flight already, I was incommunicado with any of my loved ones, and none of the passengers on the plane had any idea what had happened. It made for a nervous couple of hours for my family, until I landed in Dallas. Immediately upon arrival to the gate, cell phones all around were beeping like crazy, with calls from loved ones breaking the news to us, hoping to find we were ok.
It was an eerie feeling that morning, in the wake of 9-11. So tragic, the loss of lives. It was eerily quiet as we deplaned that morning. I believe everyone had similar thoughts – to be thankful to be on the ground, yet tragically mourning the crash, wondering if there were more to come. As we would find out, there were no further incidents that morning, and I continued my business trip as usual. But, to be sure, people traveling that day had a sense of awe about them, not on regarding air travel, but the world itself.
It’s hard to believe it’s been eighteen years since those events. Air travel has changed drastically, and yet, somehow, we’ve all adjusted to our “new norm”. We’ve picked up the pieces and moved on… because we really had no other choice.