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Remembering 9/11

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Megan Bajor, English teacher, stands with her husband and young children next to a firetruck. Bajor was teaching at Lake Zurich on September 11, 2001. (Photo used with permission of Megan Bajor)

I ended up going home [from work] and I just held my kids and me and then talked to the neighbors and talked to my family and it was devastating. I’m still tearing up today 16 years later. And it was-logically I knew I could get through it and that we were going to be OK. But in my heart I felt like our lives were never going to be the same and that things like our freedom and love baseball games and you know things like that. And it was devastating. I can’t even tell you how much it changed me as a person and always will. I just don’t think I’ll ever forget that day,” Megan Bajor, English teacher, said. “The week after everyone was so nice to each other. Everyone had their flags out and we had one flag flying overhead but everyone had flags out everyone was alternates just so I mean it’s a very nice community anyway. But just, it was above and beyond just because everyone was so shaken. And even now we were concerned about Iraq and Afghanistan and what we’re going to do with that. You know you obviously want retaliation but we also didn’t want any bloodshed, any more bloodshed. We wanted to get back at the people who did this to us. I think it’s one of those things that will never be out of people’s memories who were adults at the time. I think we kind of look at and say will sense it always be like the epoch of events from now on before 9/11 or after 9/11. But I didn’t want to go to war and I didn’t want to see all kinds of bloodshed and everything that was known was that it was you know there was a lot of emotion and some very pull toward. But it really is kind of like the before and after. [It’s] the epoch of my adulthood, for sure.”

Kim Ferraro, history teacher, was in third grade on September 11, 2001. Today, she teaches students who were not alive at that time about the attacks.

I was in third grade. I remember it was a very confusing day because I was a kid and we didn’t really understand, but the teachers were so frazzled. When we were in school, we saw the teachers running in and out of the room and an administrator basically came in and gave us a letter that basically said ‘something horrible has happened, please go home and talk with your family about what happened.’ We watched the news most of the night, just the videos over and over again as journalists tried to unpack what happened. It was kind of asking “why” why did these events happen? We really didn’t have the facts yet, so it was just us staring in disbelief,” Kim Ferraro, history teacher, said. “When it happened, I definitely understood that the country was under attack, but I didn’t understand the complexities of the terrorists groups and that whole issue of our country going to war. I did understand that our country was under attack and that the Taliban hated us for some reason, but I couldn’t articulate why. I’m [now] 24, and I was eight when it happened so I was alive when it happened, and I’ve taught freshmen and sophomores that some weren’t even alive on 9/11, or if they were alive, they were babies so they have no clue. I’ve been in classes where I’ve had to tell the kids the story about how I was in school and there was this mass confusion. The kids can’t relate to what happened.”

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Lake Zurich High School Student Media
Remembering 9/11