Tuesday, September 11, 2012



September 11, 2004


I spent a lot of my honeymoon emailing my family back home.

We flew to Kauai, Hawaii on September 9, 2001, the morning after our kick-ass wedding. That was a 23-hour travel day, so by the time we got to our resort we were exhausted. We barely had the energy to order room service, but we HAD to eat. Then we fell fast asleep.

Monday, September 10th, was the first day of our honeymoon. We soon realized that we were literally in paradise, and we couldn't possibly be happier. Kauai is the most beautiful place on earth, at least the most beautiful place that I have seen so far.

Tuesday morning, September 11th, I was in the shower, shouting out to Anthony in the bedroom some suggestions of what we could do that day. "Want to go to the caves?" "We could take a short day-trip to Maui, I don't think the flights are expensive?" He was not answering me. "Anthony?"

He peeked his head into the bathroom and said "Um, I have ESPN on, I am trying to get the score from the Monday Night Football game, but there is regular news on ESPN. There is NEVER regular news on ESPN. I think something bad happened at home..."

Understatement of the century, Anthony.

On this, the third anniversary of September 11, I decided I would share some of the emails I traded back and forth with our families while we were honeymooning. I think it is important, as time passes, that I never forget that feeling I had when I first learned about everything that had happened that day. We can never forget the significance and the sadness of that day.

These are the real emails shared by myself and our families.

Wednesday, September 12, from me:

"Wanted to check in again briefly due to all the activity that has been
going on at home. We are so upset and basically in disbelief. We went about
our sightseeing yesterday, but with a quiet sadness all day. We miss everyone terribly and it is hard to be more than 5,000 miles away from you all at a time like this.

If anyone that we know in any way was a victim, could you please let us
know by email? The not knowing is terrible. We {the company Anthony and I currently worked at} just finished furnishing a couple of floors of furniture at the WTC towers in NY, so for all we know a couple of coworkers could have been on site, or the installers that we use, etc. It is so terrible.

We don't leave Kauai until Friday, but even that is up in the air at this point. If all goes well, we'll be in Honolulu Friday through Wednesday morning, and then to Vegas for Wednesday through Friday morning. Flights back to the mainland are on United Airlines. I knew I hated to fly, but I have never been more apprehensive to get on a plane than I am right now.

I have to go, Anthony is waiting at the car. Going to see some caves and some professional surfers today. We love you all and we are thinking of you.

Love - Dawn"

Response from my sister, Eileen:

"Dawn, Anthony - Eileen here... It is so sad and awful and this is really the last thing you want to be thinking of on your honeymoon. Hopefully you are relaxing and not worrying too much!

There still has not been many names said of those in the devastation in
NY... They have listed names of people on the flights but none that we know
of so far, and hopefully there will be none that we know of.

Today was also full of events, bomb threats in the Westin Hotel in
Copley Plaza {in downtown Boston}.. But they have 3 people apprehended there.

Please try to enjoy your trip. I am sure that all will be fine by
the time you return this way... I am glad to hear you arrived safely and we
all wish we could be with you! I love you guys and we will talk soon!

Love Eileen"

Response from Anthony's mother:

"All is well here except for the shock of what happened. B {Anthony's stepfather} knew one of the men who died on the LA flight, He was a hockey coach from the Satellite program that B coaches with. My boss's son works in the WTC but through an incredible bit of luck his first appointment wasn't until 10 AM so he had not arrived at the office yet.

So far only distant connections - N's {a friend of the family} former boss's family had a flight attendant on the LA flight - M {Anthony's brother} thinks MC {Anthony's brother's friend} might work in the WTC - not sure though. It is too horrific to even comprehend. You know my thoughts about flying. Security is going to be extra tight now so we pray everything will be all right. If you two decide you want to stay in Hawaii we'll send money!!!!! If you want to fly into Canada we'll come and get you. I know it's easy to say but try not to let this ruin your honeymoon. You've looked forward to this for so long and there isn't really anything anyone can do by being here. Let us know what your plans are for your return trip. Love you both, M"

Response from my mom:

"Hi Guys, I don't know if you will pick up e-mail but I will send this
anyway. This situation is unbelievable to us. Everyone here is fine. I can't
tell you if anyone you know was on any of those flights. Most of what I have
heard is about people who escaped danger in one way or another. I hope you
can make this time as good as possible. Everything is up & running (except
for Logan {Airport}) and people are going about business. Not that it hasn't affected
everybody, but at this point to knuckle under is to give the terrorists what
they want. {Your company} did send people home early yesterday. I would imagine that
security will be maximum for your trip home. Do try to enjoy every moment
you can...it is important............See you soon...Love Mom"

Response from Anthony's Stepmom and Dad:

"Dawn & Anthony,

So happy that you are both safe and that you are at least trying to have
fun - L {Anthony's dad} said to grab a few rays for us!!!

I suppose traveling will be a nightmare, however just remain calm and
patience and just try to enjoy your honeymoon, no time like the present to
enjoy life.

Stay in touch
Love you and we will talk later,
Have a Pina Colada (sp) for us too!!! :-)"

Thursday, September 13, from me:

"Hello all - thanks for all of your responses. it is so good to hear from everyone and to hear that everyone is okay.

It looks bleak for us flying to Oahu tomorrow. Oh well, we are in one of the nicest resorts in the world, so if we need to stay here an extra night or two, so be it. We've done all the sights, so today we are just going to relax by the pools.

We are trying our best to relax and enjoy ourselves - at the same time, the news is on everywhere we go. I couldn't believe it when we turned on the TV yesterday and there was the Copley Westin {in Boston}!

We'll keep you posted on our location over the next few days, but again I don't think we'll be getting to Honolulu tomorrow or possibly at all at this point.

We love you all and will speak to you soon -

Dawn and Anthony"

Response from Anthony's stepfather:

"It is nice to hear from you. I hope you're having a great time, it has been
very sad around here all week. There has been little to smile about. I don't
know if M {Anthony's mom} told you but, one of our coaches from hockey was on the second plane. MB {the hockey coach} was an acquaintance of mine and his death has really made this too real for me.

On the bright side, many people are raving about the wedding. Great band, great food and great party. I am still excited for you both.

Love, B"

Anyways, I just wanted to share a few of those. There are many more, from when we landed in Oahu and later when we made it to Las Vegas. I refuse to delete these emails from my inbox because I don't want to forget the feelings from those first few days. It is so easy to get caught up in the daily trials and tribulations of everyday life, but the truth is, so many others are in so much pain today, have had so much more sadness and worry and loss than me with my "problems." Time makes us forget, and I don't ever want to forget. I am thinking of all of the people who lost family and friends three years ago today.

posted by Dawn @ 9/11/2004 09:06:00 AM