Dallas Business Leaders’ 9/11 Memoirs – Part One

In honor of the 10th anniversary of September 11th, Mom Corps Dallas remembers those who died during the terrorist attacks. We are thinking of their loved ones and friends as well as those injured and the heros who came to the rescue of many on this day. We asked Dallas business leaders what September 11th means to them. We were awed and honored for their responses. This is the first in a three-part special weekend series. Please read on.

Gregory Yared, Cindy's son, painted their car in honor of 9/11, on his own accord.

“I was born in 1965, two years after the assassination of John F. Kennedy. I remember frequently hearing adults talking about how they could still remember exactly where they were and what they were doing when they heard the news about JFK. I didn’t really understand what they meant until 9/11 happened.

My son was about 3 at the time and I was 8 months pregnant with my daughter. I was talking to my mother-in-law in Canada on the telephone. The Today Show was on the television in the other room. I heard something mentioned about an airplane crash but didn’t pay attention until after I hung up the phone. When I saw the images being played repeatedly on the television of the towers collapsing, I sat down and cried, holding my pregnant belly and trying to explain to a 3-year-old why I was crying and what had happened in a way that he could understand. I called my husband and we cried together over the phone and again that night when he came home from work, holding each other tight in dismay and disbelief.

There is such a clear demarcation before and after 9/11. It has affected our thoughts, dealt our nation such a personal psychological blow we had not felt in any of the wars we had fought and I believe it still affects us today. I started my business one year after 9/11 and in the past nine years, I cannot tell you how often I have heard people reminisce, discuss and bemoan ‘the way things were’ before the devastating events of that day. All I know today, is that the world is different, business is different and I am different. I am more grateful for every moment, every client and each new opportunity with my business and my family. There is no looking back, only moving forward. We cannot make progress or change the world by looking backward. On 9/11 I will say a prayer for the individuals who lost their lives and for their families and then I will move on, take action, raise two amazing children and grow my business. This is the American way.”

Dr. Minette Riordan is the founder of Scissortail Publishing. The company’s websites include www.northtexaskids.com and www.bydesignforwomen.com. You can follow her on twitter at www.twitter.com/minetter or “like” her on Facebook www.facebook.com/northtexaskids and www.facebook.com/webbmag.

“I remember September 11th, 2001, like it was yesterday. I was a young executive working for 7-Eleven on the 39th floor of Cityplace in downtown Dallas. Like any other day we were getting ready for the daily grind, checking our emails, etc. My colleague and good friend Brady called me next door to his office in a surprise and told me the Trade Center had been hit by a plane. His first thought was to show a picture of him standing on the tower the week before! We love NYC and traveled there frequently so it all seemed so tangible to us. As we left our offices we headed for the restaurant in the basement to watch the news coverage. About the time we sat down we saw with our own eyes the second plane vault into the tower … we knew then it was no accident did the rest of the world.

Shortly after we got word that all planes would be grounded and that large building like outs could be in danger. Our life changed that day. I went to my office a while later to grab some things. Before I left I looked out my window that overlooked the landing strip at Love Field and saw no planes passing, none landing and none taking off. It was an empty feeling.

A week to the day later … I was on my first flight since 9/11. It was a scaring feeling as I looked around wondering if anyone there was a terrorist, or if anyone there was a victim or if anyone shared my fear. We were scared and scarred for sure.

I landed in Chicago and had a great day of meetings and capped the night off with my first trip to Wrigley Field, America’s game at America’s time in one her great venues. That night at the midst of his chase, Sammy Sosa hit a home run and grabbed our flag and waved it above his head whole we rounded the bases. The entire stadium erupted, we screamed, some cried, and we all realized we would forever be changed.

But we will always be Americans and our pride, acceptance and love of country would carry us beyond any hatred waged against us.”

Tim McCallum is the CEO & president of Raze Media. The company’s website is www.razemedia.com. You can “like” them at www.facebook.com/RazeMedia or follow on twitter www.twitter.com/RazeMedia.