NEW YORK CITY (BP)–I went to work this morning and saw the World Trade Center on fire, big holes in the sides and flames. I didn’t know what happened so I wandered among the crowds looking up until I found my friend, Rosalyn, from the gym.
We were chatting when there was a big, thunderous sound and we realized the first tower was going to collapse.
People panicked. They started screaming and running and I was knocked down and trampled a bit. I kept screaming so people would not run on top of me.
Then, it was quiet for a moment. I started helping Rosalyn up when there was another huge storm of debris and everyone was blown down the street.
It was black.
I had to hang on to scaffolding for dear life not to be blown down the street.
Pure black — dust everywhere — couldn’t breathe — thought I was done. Lost my shoes, glasses, and purse. It went on and on.
Eventually the noise stopped, but it was still dark. People were calling out names and yelling that they couldn’t breathe. It got a bit lighter and I started looking through the inches and inches of dust and debris everywhere to find my shoes.
A fireman told me not to worry about my shoes and get out of there. People were yelling that we should walk to the water (Hudson River).
A man named Alex took me by the hand and led me through the eerie, dimness. He found my shoes in the rubble. We went to the water and he told me we had to go north before the other tower collapsed.
He held my hand and talked to me for the entire five-hour walk home. It was so surreal, a beautiful, cloudless day, thousands of people walking up the East Side, along the water, fighter planes overhead, soldiers in the streets with machine guns.
One of Alex’s baby triplets had a fever this morning so he went to his WTC office late — which probably saved his life.
For me, he was an angel, leading me to safety.
Warren, an actuary for an insurance company, was caught in the melee that followed a terrorist attack at the World Trade Center, Sept. 11. Warren sustained minor injuries. She is a member of Madison (N.J.) Baptist Church.