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September 11th 2001

September 11th 2001

By Stephen Saunders, Cofounder, Light Reading

NEW YORK - No one at Light Reading has been able to find words to describe the horror of what happened in this city on Tuesday. Given that words are all we have to offer, this has left us feeling frustrated and helpless.

I live on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Like millions of others, I watched in stunned amazement as the first pictures were broadcast of the World Trade Center under attack. That shock turned to anger as the second plane struck, and I realized that America itself was under attack.

Light Reading's office on Leonard Street is less than half a mile from the World Trade Center. I caught a subway downtown, wanting to be with our staff. I assumed the fires in the towers would be put out. I assumed the towers would remain standing.

At 9:50 a.m. I came up out of the subway at 14th Street and started walking south. By the time I reached Canal Street I was part of a frightened crowd. I could see and smell the smoke. When the sirens weren't screaming it was eerily quiet, except for the indescribable sound that onlookers made when a body fell from the towers -- or someone jumped from the burning buildings.

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