Ten years ago today, the United States was attacked like it never had been, four airliners (a United 757-222 and 767-222ER, and an American 757-223 and 767-223ER) were hijacked by terrorists and used as missiles into buildings to kill thousands of innocent people in New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington DC. The airline industry and the traveling experience would never be the same.
The HNL RareBirds team honors the sacrifice of the flight and cabin crews of the four airliners, the heroic passengers who tried to take back UAL93, the heroic men and women at The Pentagon, and the heroic men and women of the NYPD, the PANY/NJ and the FDNY on that fateful day. The above photo is a memorial eternal flame that stands on the grounds of Honolulu Hale dedicated to those mentioned above.
Personally, I was awaken to a phone call from family in Los Angeles to turn on the TV. I saw the repeated horror of watching the UAL and AAL 762s hit the World Trade Center towers, which made my stomach turn. My work day was scheduled to videotape a Japanese tourist wedding near HNL, at the DAV Park at Ke‘ehi Lagoon. I took my scanner with me, and could hear the queue of inbound airliners trying to land. While on my way to the location, I could also see Hawai‘i Air National Guard F-15s orbiting HNL.