On 9/11, ‘Things You Remember’ and ‘Choose to Forget’: Cynthia McFadden of ‘Nightline’

“Nightline’s” Cynthia McFadden reporting on Sept. 11, 2011. Credit: ABC News

It’s funny, the things you remember.  

I remember so vividly walking to the office on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, and thinking that the sky had never looked more beautiful.  It was a brilliant, vibrant blue, the dawn of a perfect fall day.  My 3-year-old son was to start nursery school the next morning.  I was in early, well before 9 a.m.  

Devon Binch, my assistant at the time, got a phone call from a young friend who worked downtown. Something awful was going on at the World Trade Center.  She wasn’t sure what.  We snapped on the TV. Within minutes, WABC broke into programming with news of the first plane’s hitting the tower.  I called our news desk.  At that point, we still thought it was a small plane, a tragic mistake.

Mimi Gurbst was running the desk then. She asked me to head downtown with a crew.  The second plane hit as we got in the van. We could see the smoke.  As we got closer, we passed people walking north, dazed, covered with ash. Police stopped our truck, refusing to let it go further south.  We walked.  

Much of the next 48 hours is a blur. I do remember they canceled the first day of nursery school. It is funny what you choose to forget.

Remembering 9/11: Share your memories with ABC News HERE