10 Remember 9/112011

9/11 Page GraphicPhoto: U.S. Naval Photographers/Creative Commons Unported License


Updated: Monday, Aug. 25, 2014

Editor's note: This series of stories launched in August 2011 to preview the 10th anniversary of 9/11. It has been updated with new content twice since then.

More than a day's drive separate Chicago from New York City and Washington D.C. But the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, brought them much closer.

Now, a decade after 9/11, the staff of The Red Line Project profiles 10 people and communities that were impacted by the acts of terrorism at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and aboard United 93. Some lost family members. Some witnessed the event. Some rushed from Chicago to help.

And they share one thing in common: They all remember ... 


Firefighter Steve Serb photo

“This horrible event of hate really catalyzed this incredible outpouring of love and compassion with everyone in America doing everything they could to help ... I wish we had that compassion all the time.”

Journalist Margaret Ramirez

“We could see the skyline of the towers with smoke streaming. After about an hour, we all looked and they just crumbled ... I still shake when I think of that, all the people that worked there. I pretty much saw them all turn to ash.”

Col. (Ret.) Jill Morgenthaler

“I was stunned, I figured we were at war, but I couldn’t figure out who the enemy was. I was thinking, ‘Is it China? Is it Russia? Who’s attacking America?’ ”

John Harris Photo

“It was the first time in U.S. history that all airports closed. Airports from time-to-time close for security reasons or for mechanical failure, but never had the whole system shut down. It was somewhat eerie to look up in the sky and not see any planes or any contrails in the air ... [it was an] eerie quiet.”

Kat Hindmand Photo

“Disasters oftentimes cause people to lose faith in humanity. Our job is to provide immediate assistance, establish a human connection, bear witness to their experience, and empower them for the future.”

Bob Jacobe Photo

“I don’t know when it’s going to end, but I’m sure this is not the end. Something else is going to rise before our time is over. We put down our guard on 9/11. People forgot what happened at Pearl Harbor. We have to stay on our toes and stay alert.”

Bob Wachowski Photo

“As first responders, we are trained to handle any credible threat. Public Safety [has] always maintained excellent relations with law enforcement. Today, we work closely with the FBI and Homeland Security.” -- DePaul Director of Public Safety Bob Wachowski (left)

Ruta Rimas Photo

“It was one of those moments when I felt very much a part of the city and a piece of the city. It was just a New York moment; one that has stayed with me for a very long time.”

Pat Shanower Photo

“Of course, you know all the what ifs. If he had stayed in the [Pentagon] room with the admirals, he would be alive. But he came back to do his job and was seated at the table with the other members of his group when the plane hit directly.” -- Naperville's Pat Shanower on her son, Dan, who died on 9/11

Tony Maldonado Photo

“I think that there's definitely a climate of nervousness when people have to drive through here." -- Tony Maldonado (left), who lives near Devon Avenue and its many Pakistani-run businesses

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