September 11, 2001 - 9/11

Twin TowersEveryone remembers where they were. I was in Mr. Shale's AP History class and we had brought in a radio to listen to the breaking news. Similarly, students on campus were likewise sitting in class at 8:46am and 9:03am but unaware of what had just happened. In the days before YouTube, before Twitter and Facebook, it wasn't until students got back to their rooms and turned on the television that they realized what had happened. Other students without an early class were still sleeping and woken by their roommates to turn on the television. Basketball coaches Muffet McGraw and Mike Brey were on the East Coast doing recruiting trips. An assistant women's basketball coach convinced Muffet to fly out of Providence instead of Boston, she cancels her flight out of Boston to go to Providence and there the two bumped into Brey. Together, they get the last rental car and make the drive back to South Bend. Muffet's cancelled flight out of Boston? United 175.

All activities and classes were cancelled and President Fr. Malloy declared a day of prayer. Later that afternoon, Fr. Malloy celebrated mass before 7,000 students and employees. A sea of people stretched down South Quad from the flag pole to Rockne Memorial. In a very moving service, the Notre Dame community got through the day together. As some students questioned their faith of how the events of the day could have just occurred, other students sat with them and together they got through it. One student summarized the day as follows:

"In whatever way we individually needed it [...] I needed that friend, and he was there for me. This was ultimately expressed with the campus wide mass where everyone showed up to be there for each other and offer a shoulder to lean on, and some comfort where it was desperately needed."

The following Saturday, Notre Dame's game at Purdue would be cancelled. The next game, home versus Michigan State, was a very moving day as well. A month later on, Notre Dame would hold the first Blue Mass for firefighters and policemen. (We'll get to these specific events later in a continued 9/11 Series)

Today on the tenth anniversary another mass will again be celebrated. President Fr. Jenkins will preside over the mass and Fr. Malloy will give the homily, as he did ten years prior. Mass will be celebrated on Library Quad in front of the Memorial Library. After mass, there will be a candlelight procession to the Grotto. Full details can be found on the President's site.

There's much more that could be said, but there's not much left to say. Many members of the Notre Dame community lost someone close to them or knew someone who had. Feel free to leave your thoughts and prayers below, we'll take them and light a candle for those that can't make it to campus.

Twin Towers Lights
911 Candle

Thank you to the alumni who expressed their memories and feelings from that day.

Keywords: 9/11, father jenkins, monk malloy, purdue, michigan state, blue mass, muffet mcgraw, mike brey, south quad

Posted On: 2011-09-11 03:15:00 by IrishTrpt07


      Were you there? Have more to add? Leave a comment and let us know!

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   Posted By: KT1 at 2011-09-11 18:50:26[#2]
There was a campus wide mass on Library quad tonight where hundreds of students and faculty gathered in remembrance of 9/11. Father Malloy gave the homily since he gave the homily on south quad ten years ago today. He shared how the atmosphere was on that day and how meaningful that mass had been to him, just seeing the hundreds of students gathered as one strong community in a time of such confusion. Similar to ten years ago, the entire community wrapped our arms around each other as we sang the Lord's Prayer. To conclude mass we each lit our remembrance candles and sang the alma mater, which was one of the most touching alma maters that I have ever personally been apart of. Then we walked to the Grotto with our candles lit where people continued their thoughts and prayers.For those lucky enough to attend, it was a mass that we will never forget just as we will never forget those who died ten years ago today.
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   Posted By: Senor Chops at 2011-09-11 18:27:15[#1]
I remember being right there with you in Shale's class that day when I first heard. I also remember being absolutely terrified for all of 5th and 6th period afterwards because I couldn't remember whether or not my uncle still worked in the Twin Towers (thankfully, he did not). I was lucky to have not directly lost anyone I knew that day, but I've met a great many who lost so much.

It's easy for people to empathize, but I think if you weren't there or near there, it's hard to truly think that it really happened, that it wasn't just a terrible dream. It's still horrible and surreal to think about.
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