When the first hijacked airplane hit the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, few Californians were awake yet.
Three hours behind, many of the residents of the nation’s most populous state did not hear about the attacks until hours after they had happened, and when the rest of the country already knew what was happening. That will not prevent some Californians from waking very early to observe the 15th anniversary of the attacks, even though 9/11 falls on a Sunday morning this year.
While many of the memorial services and ceremonies listed for Southern California begin at 9 a.m. or later, in Santa Monica, the fire department is holding a memorial at 6:45 a.m. at four locations, concurrently, the Santa Monica Daily Press reports.
According to a timeline of events on September 11, that corresponds roughly to the time between the moment when a second plane hit the World Trade Center and when the South Tower collapsed, killing many of the firefighters who had rushed there.
Former San Francisco mayor Willie Brown recalled his memories of the day, after waking up to board a flight to New York that would never leave, and rushing to City Hall to determine how the city would react to protect itself against other attacks.
“At City Hall, we had no idea what might be coming next. Like the mayors of every big city in the country, I suddenly had scores of potential targets to worry about,” Brown recalled this weekend in the San Francisco Chronicle
“We had to do something to secure the Golden Gate and Bay bridges. We had to be concerned about the schools, BART, Muni Metro and symbolic buildings like the Transamerica Pyramid. This was not a drill.”
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. His new book, See No Evil: 19 Hard Truths the Left Can’t Handle, is available from Regnery through Amazon. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.