Memories of The Windows of The World

September 3, 2009

9_11_jumpers Windows_on_the_world_window_seats

Memories of The Windows of the World

 

I have a very different memory of the World Trade Center and the restaurant at its’ top known as “The Windows of the World”.

My mother took me there for lunch and it was a lovely sunny New York day.

 

The view from the top was elegant as was the service and ambiance.

It was the crowning jewel in New York’s history of being the biggest and the best.

 

I had already moved to San Diego and she was so anxious to treat me to the experience of this great new building. The ride up in the elevator was exciting in itself.

 

When the building was hit on September 11 mother was visiting me in Del Mar and the TV news was on. We could not believe our eyes as the towers crumbled over and over again in instant replay.

 

We called home to make sure our family had not been hurt. My nephews’ wife was missing. She worked at the World Trade Center. We later discovered that she was among the thousands who walked across the Brooklyn Bridge to safety.

 

Thankful she was late to the office that day.

 

These images are of the Windows of the World Restaurant at the World Trade Center before it was hit by American Airlines flight 11 and the aftermath that ensued.

Windows_on_the_world_window_seats

The 9-11 jumpers; they didn’t “jump”

 

 

[...] “It took three or four to realize: They were people,” says James Logozzo, who had gathered with co-workers in a Morgan Stanley boardroom on the 72nd floor of the south tower, just 120 feet away from the north tower. “Then this one woman fell.”Most came from the north tower’s 101st to 105th floors, where the Cantor Fitzgerald bond firm had offices, and the 106th and 107th floors, where a conference was underway at the Windows on the World restaurant. Others leaped from the 93rd through 100th floor offices of Marsh & McLennan insurance company.

Intense smoke and heat, rather than flames, pushed people into this horrific choice. Flight 11 struck the 94th through 98th floors of the north tower, shooting heat and smoke up elevator shafts and stairways in the center of the building. Within minutes, it would have been very difficult to breathe. That drove people to the windows 1,100 to 1,300 feet above ground.. The fire was more intense and compact in the north tower. The jet hit higher, so smoke was concentrated in 15 floors compared with 30 floors in the south tower, which was hit on the 78th through 84th floors. The north tower also stood longer: 102 minutes vs. 56 minutes. And twice as many people were trapped on the north tower’s upper floors than in the south tower, where occupants had 161/2 minutes to evacuate before the second jet hit.

She fell closer to the south tower, he recalls. Logozzo saw her face. She had dark hair and olive skin, a white blouse and black skirt. She fell with her back to the ground, flat, staring up.

“The look on her face was shock. She wasn’t screaming. It was slow motion. When she hit, there was nothing left,” Logozzo says.

[...]

USA TODAY estimates that at least 200 people jumped to their deaths that morning, far more than can be seen in the photographs taken that morning. Nearly all were from the north tower, which was hit first and collapsed last. Fewer than a dozen were from the south tower.

The jumping started shortly after the first jet hit at 8:46 a.m. People jumped continuously during the 102 minutes that the north tower stood. Two people jumped as the north tower began to fall at 10:28 a.m., witnesses said.

For those who jumped, the fall lasted 10 seconds. They struck the ground at just less than 150 miles per hour — not fast enough to cause unconsciousness while falling, but fast enough to ensure instant death on impact. People jumped from all four sides of the north tower. They jumped alone, in pairs and in groups.

There were several reasons more people jumped from the north tower than from the south

The New York medical examiner’s office says it does not classify the people who fell to their deaths on Sept. 11 as “jumpers.”

“A ‘jumper’ is somebody who goes to the office in the morning knowing that they will commit suicide,” says Ellen Borakove, spokeswoman for the medical examiner’s office. “These people were forced out by the smoke and flames or blown out.” [...]

The subject of jumping from tall buildings has a personal meaning to me as my sister took her own life in this manner many years before 911 and for very different reasons, nevertheless the images that such a disaster conjures within  is to this day horrifying. The next image of 911 jumpers is as well.

jumperss fate

These images will be part of am interactive Art Show to memorialize the victims of 911.

Opens at the Brokers Building Gallery  September 5, 2009. Reception from 7 to 10 PM.

Comments (54) | More: BLOG

54 Responses to “Memories of The Windows of The World”

  1. I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Exceptionally
    well written!

  2. SimonRodgers says:

    Even on the streets where I live in the UK their was a quietness, a sort of calm. The events of that day reverberated around the globe. The sympathy and love that I saw when complete strangers were hugging each other will stay with me long after the images of people jumping from the towers. I remember watching a news reporter calmly walk over to the lady he was interviewing after she burst out crying and he hugged her, like a real hug as though the pain she felt was a pain he felt also. It brought people together, made them notice and care for one and other, for me that is the reason why that day will forever stay in my mind.

  3. Martina Crews says:

    I love what Simon Rodgers said.. ppl were being so good to one another.. but it didn’t last.. and that is what upsets me.. 2 weeks tops is the length of time it left the impact after that most ppl forgot and that is a real tragedy in and of itself. ANd Im sorry If you do not want to see the pictures don’t look.. but I feel it is important to keep the pics up because it helps us to truly not forget

  4. Don says:

    My supv was in an office bldg across from the trade center and to florida where I was, he saw people jumping we were horrified and sad he saw that.

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