9/11 -- St. Petersburg Times Special Report

Sunday, Sept. 1
  • Florida: Terror's launching pad
  • The 19 plotters and their day of terror
  • Remembering

    Monday, Sept. 2
  • When tragedy meets capitalism
  • '9/11 fatigue' is natural, mental health experts say

    Tuesday, Sept. 3
  • Coping as a kid
  • Eric Deggans: 9/11 documentary asks troubling questions about religion
  • Sept. 11 photograph exhibit opens

    Wednesday, Sept. 4
  • Millions in new funding don't guarantee security
  • Donations to local charities slow in months after attacks
  • Sept. 11 donations swamp charities
  • Bush to visit three attack sites on 9/11

    Thursday, Sept. 5
  • Attack anniversary is living history lesson
  • Trading fallback system improved
  • Future of site still beset by debate

    Friday, Sept. 6
  • Senate approves plan to allow armed pilots
  • Dream job becoming demoralizing
  • New plane doors would withstand gunfire
  • What ever happened to ... Those patriotic paint jobs?
  • The other 911
  • Consolidated for the cause

    Saturday, Sept. 7
  • In chaos, TIA tower controlled 9/11 skies
  • Congress, N.Y. reaffirm solidarity
  • Traveling can be nicer in rougher countries
  • For TIA workers, 'normal' not what it used to be
  • Airlines don't see relief over horizon
  • Terror only one blow to tourism
  • A year later, it's the home fires that burn brightly
  • Flying the flag

    Sunday, Sept. 8
  • 125 Cedar Street
  • The drama in Sarasota
  • Cautious, yes, but still traveling
  • As security increases, fervor fades
  • Rising risks
  • Finding lessons in rubble of tragedy
  • Public loss, private grief
  • Duty calls; he goes; they wait
  • Riled residents show true colors
  • Keeping her distance
  • Which way leads up?
  • For the record
  • 45 Questions
  • A lexicon of terror, post-9/11
  • Before attacks, this was the news
  • Other events on Sept. 11
  • Voice mail delivers, retains final words
  • Keeping us rolling
  • 9.11
  • How we'll view it

    Monday, Sept. 9
  • The residue of terror
  • Patriotism is more than emotion
  • What ever happened to . . .: Our religious fervor?
  • The nightmares return
  • Life has the right-of-way
  • Free to disagree
  • 'Time has not healed the pain'
  • Deputies to step up patrol for anniversary
  • Security upgrade since 9/11 slow, steady
  • Enthusiasm for PHCC's security classes dissipates
  • Teachers untangle Sept. 11 lessons
  • A bumpy year for business
  • The man who would have led Afghanistan
  • People who made the headlines

    Tuesday, Sept. 10
  • Multitude to gather to wave U.S. flags
  • Pictures evoke profound feelings
  • Attacks haven't boosted sales of cell phones
  • Schools discover ways to reflect on attacks
  • Flags still wave, but sales fall from peak
  • Three fathers lost
  • Telemarketers easing up on 9/11
  • Nuclear plant adds security layers to prevent terrorism
  • Cough, stress hinder emergency workers
  • Families of missing sit in limbo
  • Places of importance after the attacks

    Wednesday, Sept. 11
  • Remembrance and renewal
  • Flags Along the Bayshore: Tampa Remembers 9/11
  • Ways of remembering
  • A piece of paper . a blue and white truck
  • Is America ready for another attack?
  • Nation to honor victims in silence
  • Poll: Compassion remains
  • The war so far
  • Terror update
  • Attack on Iraq would test headquarters at MacDill
  • 09-11-01 Perspectives
  • Those who died in the attacks
  • Myriad rescue agencies trust their link won't fail
  • Photo gallery
  • (This Flash gallery requires the free Flash Player 5+.)

    Thursday, Sept. 12
  • Emotional service honors those who died selflessly
  • Elements of pride
  • Echo of 9/11 empties airport
  • A day full of tributes, flags and questions
  • Prayer, fellowship pull many through agonizing anniversary
  • Tributes great and small
  • Children in a changed world pause to reflect
  • Citrus recalls 9/11 with its heart
  • Marking the imponderable
  • Ministers assure that God was there that sorrowful day
  • Chime recalls a nation's losses
  • For law officers, day passes quietly
  • Residents gather to heal, remember
  • In big and small ways, our community pays tribute
  • Cities somberly mark Sept. 11
  • Patriotic display greets drivers
  • Day of grief, resolve
  • At county schools, remembrance resounds
  • Travel lags on attacks' anniversary
  • They were us
  • Americans worldwide cautious on anniversary
  • Radical Muslims discuss 'positive outcomes' of Sept. 11
  • Amid grief, Bush gives warning

  • printer version

    09-11-01
    TERROR

    The residue of terror

    Its swift, sudden onslaught freezes the will; its lingering shades darken the imagination.

    By MELANIE HUBBARD
    © St. Petersburg Times
    published September 9, 2002


    Terror: The residue of terror
    Its swift, sudden onslaught freezes the will; its lingering shades darken the imagination.

    Patriotism: More than just emotion
    Shared ideals unified us after Sept. 11; misplaced zeal cannot be permitted to splinter commitment to those ideals.

    Security: The nightmares return
    "I thought I was through having nightmares about that case," Pat Johnson says.

    Spirituality: Life has the right-of-way
    Last Sept. 11, a Tampa boy's bar mitzvah was days away. A teaching from the Talmud helped him and his family decide to go ahead with their celebration.

    Heroism: Free to disagree
    Americans appreciate their freedoms more than before -- including the right to protest.

    The fireworks sound ominous, like war. Happy New Year, New Century, New Millennium. Gunshot, cannonade and pounding. Roman candles and cherry bombs. The low and constant rumbling of an engine: somebody's car, parked amid the swales of long grass on the point across the water from our house, casts its beams and shadows.

    Toward midnight, the crackershot, car horns and yelling voices escalate. From the point, not 100 yards away, I hear a woman screech, "Get the f-- off of me!" and "Get out of here!" I hear a man roar, "Rape?! We're not even going to go there!" They're yelling at the top of their lungs, as if to be heard above the din. As if to say, Please, somebody, prevent what is about to happen.

    I hear the slam and bounce of a body against a car door. Her head? And then, moments later, the sobbing wail. I am dialing 911, too late already, too late. My husband, his hearing impaired by army artillery long ago, does not hear the rape. I guess he does not quite believe it. I've got the bedroom light on, pacing, pacing, pacing. I spot a police car on the wrong side of the inlet, dial 911 again, try to give directions. But I don't know my neighbors, I don't know the number or the street.

    All quiet. No more fireworks, no yelling, just cold, starry peace. I cannot sleep, of course. Why was that engine rumbling, rumbling, rumbling? Why didn't anyone turn it off?

    I sleep with the windows closed and the A/C on. For months afterward I cannot abide the daytime shrieks of the neighborhood children, far away, beyond my ability to distinguish attack from play. I prick my ears at odd hours. My vulnerable ears. They cannot help what they hear, what they have to process. It is not so good to have sensitive ears.

    Fifteen years ago, my college friend Anita was raped in her home while I was at church. The coincidence does not resolve, will never resolve. Years later, I heard a rape, the shouts and growls echoing in the courtyard from below, in New York City. I panicked, rushed out into the bustling street to find a cop -- there was always a cop -- but no, no, there was none. I ran back up to my room, then out again. I couldn't bear to be there, to hear it, to be unable to do anything about it. Dial 911? And say what? That I don't know the number of their building, much less of their apartment?

    My old roommate told me recently that one of them shot the other one. Some days I imagine that the man shot the woman. Other days (still) I imagine that the woman shot the man. It is not a triumph for the woman; it is despair, as when the car blasts off the cliff at the end of Thelma & Louise.

    I watched the towers go down. It was hardly real: It was on TV. I could do nothing but watch. They didn't show the dying. I couldn't hear the screaming. Later I read that some chose to leap, faced with fire. Some chose to hold hands.

    - Melanie Hubbard is a writer in Ruskin.


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    Related coverage
  • The residue of terror
  • Patriotism is more than emotion
  • What ever happened to . . .: Our religious fervor?
  • The nightmares return
  • Life has the right-of-way
  • Free to disagree
  • 'Time has not healed the pain'
  • Deputies to step up patrol for anniversary
  • Security upgrade since 9/11 slow, steady
  • Enthusiasm for PHCC's security classes dissipates
  • Teachers untangle Sept. 11 lessons
  • A bumpy year for business
  • The man who would have led Afghanistan
  • People who made the headlines