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Alex McCord: Personal memories of 9/11

When did I finally break down after 9/11?

This week in New York is always a little surreal. It’s the first week of school, the beginning of Fashion Week and the city seems to be waking up from its end-of-summer slumber. Depending on whether one has children or anything to do with the fashion industry, these may or may not affect people’s lives.

The one thing on everyone’s mind though, is that it’s been ten years since the world changed forever.

As someone who lost a parent young, I noticed that some anniversaries passed without much of an impact but other years were hard. This year, the anniversary of 9/11 seems to be much more present. Why? It's now been 10 years, there’s finally meaningful construction happening on the site, and many people in general, even those who were not directly affected, can’t stop thinking about it.

I was lucky to be several degrees of separation from losing a loved one. My husband and I witnessed the struggle of a colleague whose fiancé worked at Cantor Fitzgerald, and counted ourselves lucky.

This year, friends that I met post-9/11 told me their stories. It’s been quite a long time since I thought about those memories, but here’s one of my own personal memories that stands out most strongly to me.



It had been a long week of working at the Hotel Chandler, which had opened one week prior on September 4th -- Simon and I had stayed mostly on site since then. On Sunday, we walked away, went to Starbucks and sat down in Madison Square Park with coffee and the weekend papers. I opened up the New York Times and was struck by all the condolence ads. Reading the heartfelt messages placed by businesses, individuals and countries all over the world, I finally took a breath, and broke down. It was the first and only time I cried. I wish I had saved that paper, but I don’t need the hard copy to remember.



Wherever you were, and however you were affected, this weekend let’s all stand together, united, and never forget.