Sep. 7, 2011 at 5:18pmRemembering 9/11

A Decade Later

Like I have, you’ve probably been seeing all the programming this week around the anniversary date of 9/11 -- which is this Sunday. Although it seems unbelievable to me, it’s been 10 years since the tragedy of 9/11 played out on TV for millions in America and across the world.

 I will always remember that day … getting an early morning call from my husband while I was getting ready for work in Portland. A week before that date in 2001, I had started a new job as an education reporter for a newspaper group in the Portland suburbs.  

My husband had called me after the first plane hit the South Tower of the World Trade Center but before the second plane hit. I proceeded to watch the media grapple with all that was going on after the second plane hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center and subsequent planes hit the Pentagon, in Pennsylvania and the FAA shut down world air space. I had no personal connections to anyone in the buildings in New York but, like millions of others, I experienced anger, fear and apprehension about the future and a myriad of other emotions as I continued to watch the news coverage and repercussions from the terrorist attacks.

This week KSPS will join other stations in bringing coverage of the 10-year mark of the terrorist attacks – to remember and to reflect on what’s happened since then.

Here’s a breakdown of the 9/11 programming:

Tonight there are two programs about 9/11 beginning at 8 p.m. in the Spokane area.

First up is a NOVA special called “Engineering Ground Zero” which follows the five-year construction of the Freedom Tower and the World Trade Center Memorial (with extraordinary access granted by The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey). According to program notes, NOVA captures the behind-the-scenes struggle of architects and engineers with the pressures of a tight schedule, the demands of practical office space and efficient, “green” architecture and the public’s expectations of a fitting site for national remembrance. The program ends with the topping off ceremony at the Freedom Tower and the opening of the memorial.

The second program this evening, beginning at 9 p.m., is a FRONTLINE special called “Faith and Doubt at Ground Zero.” FRONTLINE explores how the spiritual lives of both believers and nonbelievers have been challenged since September 11th by difficult questions of good and evil and the potential for darkness within religion itself. Through interviews with a cross section of Americans impacted by the attacks, the many spiritual questions coming from the terror, pain and destruction at Ground Zero are explored and illuminated.

On Sunday, September 11th, programs related to the 10-year anniversary of 9/11 begin at 6 p.m. with “America Remembers—9/11." It includes highlights from the day’s events marking the sites of the attacks at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania. It includes personal perspectives from Americans across the country looking back over the events of 9/11 and how their lives have been affected over the past decade. Five members of the PBS NewsHour team – Hari Sreenivasan, Gwen Ifill, Judy Woodruff, Ray Suarez and Jeff Brown, lead the program.

On Sunday at 7 p.m. the FRONTLINE program “Top Secret America” will repeat from Tuesday Sept. 6. 

At 8 p.m. Great Performances New York Philharmonic performs Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, Resurrection, in honor of the victims of September 11, 2001 in a free concert for the people of New York. The performance will be framed with remarks on the tragic losses and the spirit of remembrance and renewal of the piece.

At 9:30 p.m. “For the Love of Their Brother,” a heartwarming story about a close-knit Staten Island family whose youngest brother died on September 11, 2001, hosted by Brooklyn-native John Turturro, will air. To honor Stephen Siller’s sacrifice, his six older siblings founded the “Tunnel-to-Towers Run,” an annual road race that re-traces the off-duty firefighter’s route from the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to the World Trade Center.

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