News of the San Gabriel Valley since 1966.


By Joe Torosian

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“When I look out the window, I exhale a prayer of thanks for the color green, for my children’s safety, for the simple acts of faith like planting a garden that helped see us through another spring, another summer. And I inhale some kind of promise to protect my kids’ hopes and good intentions we began with in this country.”—Barbara Kingsolver


I was working on deadline stuff.

I would be going into the office on Tuesday morning, so I parked it on the couch with my laptop to get work done and watch the New York Giants and Denver Broncos play the Monday night game at Invesco Field.

I was working on game night. Papers and notebooks were scattered on the coffee table.

The Broncos Brian Griese was in the process of completing 21 of 29 for three touchdown passes and 258. A portion of that went to wide receiver Ed McCaffrey who caught six passes for 94 yards and touchdown, but late in the game it changed.

McCaffrey broke his leg and the game stopped. The injury delayed things. My wife and the kids went to bed. I wanted to see the outcome (Denver won 31-20), had work to do, and I didn’t want to be at the Mid Valley News office all the next day.

It got late, most of the work was done, but I was tired and ended up falling asleep on the couch. Still needing to write my column the next day, flipped on the radio to listen to a little bit of sports talk.

I woke up some time before seven, the radio was talking about a plane crash and it mentioned the something about Washington D.C., I didn’t pay attention. I would be taking my girls to school, it was the first day of the school year. Mold in a classroom had pushed back the start a week.

As they were getting fed I went into the shower, got lathered up, than I heard my name screamed out. What? Did a kid fall? Heard my named screamed out again. I leaned out of the shower, grabbed a towel, then leaned out the bathroom door.

“Joe!” My wife yelled. “We’re being attacked!”

My first thought was this crazy Argentine woman I married is overreacting. I wrap the towel around my waist and go into the back family room to the TV. Then I see what she’s looking at…The Twin Towers are burning and in a lower level inset I see the Pentagon on fire.

That was how the day began for me on September 11, 2001.

We debated about taking the girls to school…I did. On the way out the door the first tower started to fall.

Worked in the office of the Mid Valley News that day as the news kept coming in over the radio. It got worse by the moment and I wrote my column not about the NFL, not about high school football…but about how our lives would never be the same ever again.

Didn’t need to be Nostradamus to figure that one out.

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News of the San Gabriel Valley since 1966.