I live one block south of the WTC on Greenwich Street. I left my apartment at 8:30 to vote at 90 Trinity Place—a few buildings away from the WTC. After I voted, I walked out the door—the moment I walked out, I heard a loud boom. People started running—quite chaotic—and glass and other debris went flying. I ran in to the NYSE and someone said a small plane just hit the WTC. We stayed in the stock exchange until the security at the stock exchange requested that we leave. I got on the N/R train to head up to work, near Union Square. Just as the train started to move, we heard an even larger boom—like a bomb went off. We knew that more destruction was going on above ground.
After the first boom—-while in the NYSE—I called my partner, Michael to warn him. He was still in our apartment. He went up to the roof of our building—on the 24th floor—to see the plane when all of a sudden, the 2nd plane flew through the building. He saw some people jumping out of windows to their death—100 stories up. When he was finally able to get out of our apartment, he had to climb over 2 feet of rubble.
By the time I got to work (about 15 minutes later), one of the towers was already gone—- the 2nd tower was on fire on the top 10 - 15 floors. We were watching the building knowing that many people were trapped inside. About 20 minutes later, the entire 2nd building folded like a house of cards within a matter of seconds. People on the street were in shock… many crying. The streets were filled with people watching… people very moved by this ordeal. It was extremely quiet.
The mood was very surreal. You used to be able to see the WTC from any vantage point in the city. Now you look down the streets, and see nothing but smoke.