Well, ATS, I come for another of my rare forays into the discussion and perspectives of what has come to be among the defining moments in our
nation's history. As I read and double checked, the forum here is about all things related to the events of 9/11 in specifics and particular details.
There are few stories with quite the detail or quite the specificity of this one.
Whatever the causes we each believe or suspect for the direct events to trigger everything else that day, there are some miracles to have come out of
the Towers. As one article I've found makes specific reference to, there were roughly 25,000 people who survived the World Trade Center that day.
25,000 Human Souls...and at least one pretty smart Canine.
As he stood in his office that morning on the 78th floor, the building shook and tipped in one direction about 20 feet. As soon as it righted
itself, he grabbed Roselle’s leash and thought about what to do.
“Roselle was yawning and wagging her tail so I knew we had some time to evacuate,” Hingson said. “My friend (David Frank) said ‘You don’t
understand. You can’t see it,’ but I didn’t need to see it. I trusted my dog.”
Almost 1,500 steps down, in the chaos of thousands of people going down while dozens or more worked upward and the building was taking serious
structural damage throughout whole trip down.
I don't know about anyone else? I get tired going up/down 2 floors on campus some days. I can't imagine walking 78 floors, if it were clear, normal
and I chose that under ideal conditions.
- As a sighted person under the conditions of that morning? Well, it's just not within what I have a frame of reference to really understand beyond
what is written about it.
- As someone blind from birth for context to what his reference was of the world around him, with total trust in his service dog? I call it a miracle
that hasn't always been realistic, or even possible. This has all become common place fairly recently in terms of years the blind have had this
available in their lives.
As it happens, the guidance of Roselle and the lack of panic for smooth movement which that gave....mattered. It apparently mattered a great deal.
About 9:45 a.m. they finally reached the ground floor and headed out into the sunlight and away from the chaos. He describes what he heard next
— the sound of the building collapsing — like a freight train and a waterfall.
As we all know, 14 minutes later by the clock, the tower they'd just descended 78 floors of, collapsed.
I became aware of this story just recently, and through some work I'm doing with someone and their own very special service dog. After learning more
about Roselle from published accounts and her work in Tower 2, it seemed important to share.
Sometimes, it's easy to forget that there were folks from the ground lobbies to the Sky Lobbies and to within floors of the impacts who lived and
came out with experience to share.
Sometimes, it's easy to forget the wealth of not only inspiration and wonder contained in some of the survival stories, like this one, but also the
wealth of perspective details contained in the telling of the experience for those little things which define an event.
I hope others fine it as interesting to learn about as I have. For those wondering what Roselle looked like? I found a short excerpt from the Audio
book. It also carries the cover, and Roselle.
I just heard about this a few days ago, it is a very heart warming story to say the least. This does show that canines are truly mans best friend.
This is one reason I trust dogs more than humans lol. Great post.
There are many such stories about escapes from the towers that showed courage and kindness that morning. Unfortunately, there are many, many more that
turned out tragically.
Kevin Flynn and Jim Dwyer's book 102 minutes follows many of these stories that, more ofter than not, don't have a happy ending.
For the most part agreements between victims groups, the press, researchers and authors downplayed the miraculous escapes simply because so many had
no way to escape. This is the only incident I can remember where such request were made-reluctantly most agreed to keep the focus from becoming a
media miracle escape contest.
This seems odd at first to some people however in the end most felt that it was the right thing to do. Also, many of the heroic efforts of
firefighters turned out to be not what the media claimed. For instance the story that 200 firefighters were helping people escape when the south tower
fell was totally inaccurate. In reality everyone that was capable of escaping the south tower had already done so-there were no one left for the
firefighters to help. Most did not evacuate for the simple reason that they 'don't take orders from cops' as the childish division of the
departments was in full view.
That is not something for the news cycle to pursue. The accepted total number of persons in both towers is 9,680 and six thousand had already left
when flight 175 crashed into the south tower.
For the most part agreements between victims groups, the press, researchers and authors downplayed the miraculous escapes simply because so
many had no way to escape. This is the only incident I can remember where such request were made-reluctantly most agreed to keep the focus from
becoming a media miracle escape contest.
I can appreciate the thinking and reasoning on that. Particularly in earlier years, when that wound was more raw and open. It'll never be healed to
those it directly touched. Nothing like that really ever can be, I'd think. Still, the effort to take it the way they have, for the best of reasons,
has left something of a void in public awareness for the scope of what happened.
The focus has been on the lost, and rightly so. At some point though, I think it's appropriate to balance the memorial aspect with the historical
context supplied by those average people who lived it. In the living histories recorded like this one, there is a wealth of detail too.
In this specific example, a blind person has one thing in a situation like that one that is special to note. They have higher developed senses and in
that place and moment in time, sight probably blocked details from most people's memory, by how overwhelming it all must have been to be in the
middle of it. Thunder Dog sounds and reads in excerpts like a story rich in those descriptions and small things. The overall story sure is.
I agree as time passes these things seem more appropriate and a good rescue story can be uplifting. The media on 9/11 were caught just as off guard as
every one else. Their obsession with the body count, jumpers and spreading rumors became a tangled mess as time went on. Media studies of the event
show the networks were running out of what good news-miracle escapes and such-as they tried to fill the time since most-like NBC-were on for 96 1/2
hours without a break.
You explain that to people and it takes time to grasp the concept since most are used to commercials every 8 to 10 minutes. Although it not my field,
I'm somewhat clueless about television, it's fascinating to step back in time and watch them ad lib for 4 days.
After the dust settled research staffs were busy getting clues from Titanic's aftermath to balance the small amount of good news-and the mountain of
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