Never Forget 9/11: sharing stories from faculty and students


Courtesy @QuinnipiacU Instagram

Olivia Schueller

Quinnipiac’s Veteran and Military Affairs held a ceremony on the quad to remember 9/11 at exactly 8:46 a.m., at the time that Flight 11 hit the North Tower. Members of the Quinnipiac community all have stories from that tragic day, 18 years ago. 

Jason Burke, director of veteran and military affairs, worked as a United States Navy Pilot in 2001. His squadron was located in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania. Burke flew out of Willow Grove on Sept. 13, 2001. 

“They gave us clearance to fly to South Dakota directly from Pennsylvania and they had modified these torches to cut through rebar, like the rubble in New York City,” Burke said. “So then we flew it into Newark and it was just eerie. You’re not hearing anyone on the radio.”

Other members of the Quinnipiac community were working in New York City during the terrorist attack. Former Dean of Communication, Lee Kamlet, was just having a normal day before he became aware that a plane had hit a tower.

“I was a producer at Dateline NBC and I happened to be in the NBC gymnasium that morning and happened to be watching the Today Show when the first plane hit the tower,” Kamlet said.

Unless faculty at Quinnipiac, the students have a different memory from 9/11. Most students were just one to five years old when the attack took place. Despite the little memory from 2001, students had parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles who worked as first responders during that time.

Jessica Grant, a sophomore at Quinnipiac, says her father was a first responder during 9/11. He is now struggling both mentally and physically.

“He definitely is mentally scarred, I see it and it’s hard for me to watch,” Grant said. “He will just be having a regular conversation and he’ll relate something to 9/11.” 

Grant urges those her age to never forget 9/11, no matter how many years pass by. 

“It’s so many years later, people are forgetting how many people sacrificed their lives,” Grant said. “343 firemen died but people don’t realize every other week there is a funeral for someone who is dying because of cancer.”

In July, President Donald Trump reauthorized The Victim Compensation Fund. This fund covers medical expenses and deaths related to the terrorist attack. Shortly after the reauthorization, the House Judiciary Committee signed the Never Forget The Hero’s act. This act extends the fund till 2090.