9/11/01: I was off duty that day from my Civilian Police job. I was doing my morning workout when the phone rang. “Hey! Turn on the TV NOW! Any channel.”
I hung up the phone and hit the TV remote “On” button and began watching the first Tower as it was burning. I thought that was weird to have a fire that large in one of the towers. A minute later, a passenger jet crashed into the 2nd Tower. I knew that was no accident…it was a terrorist asshole attack.
I was a full time copper and in the California Army National Guard. I had just changed military units and was in a two year program changing my MOS (Military Occupation Specialty- or Job) to MKR, Mess Kit Repair. Since I was only a weekend warrior, I had the option when I changed my MOS of either going through the straight 18 week school at Ft Huachuca, AZ; or going to class one weekend a month and going to Ft H two 2 week sessions. I had a full time job, so I took the extended course.
For the job I had just gotten into, I KNEW I’d be going somewhere after I saw that second plane hit.
A few days after Nine Eleven, I went to work. I worked in a very small town that people in the rest of the world have never heard of. So, when I was driving my patrol car around punching holes in the air, I couldn’t understand some of the calls Dispatch sent us to in those days.
Dispatch: “L3 can you contact the RP (reporting party) at 123 Nut Tree Lane, she sees a small airplane flying over her house and thinks it might be another attack.”
L3 (me) looking up in the sky (remember I said “small town”) and seeing a Piper Cub or some such little plane flying way the hell up in the air. “Dispatch, I can see a plane. I appears to be flying over the town.”
Dispatch: “L3 can you see the tail number, I’ll call the FAA”
L3(Me) scratching my head and wonder where we got some dumbass dispatchers that would just feed into some of the insanity the callers had . “Dispatch, L3, the plane is too high and I think it’s just passing over. “
We never did get the tail number, but…keep in mind…this long enough after Nine Eleven that planes were allowed to fly again…but I worked in a silly town that was full of nuts. Why anybody thought terrorist would take a plane and crash it into any place in our town was the kind of things only nuts could think of.
Little did I know where I’d end up going later on with my National Guard unit…. Fun places like Bosnia and Iraq.
And…I’d do it again if I was needed. I was actually kind of glad to get away from the little police dept for a couple of years…. "Whiskey for my men and beer for my horses..."
I’ll be busy this next week. I’m going to the police academy to take a class so I can teach there.