9/11 Stories

Frank and Shelly Rubino

My wife Shelley and I were on vacation in the Dominican Republic when this attack took place. We were having lunch at a small restaurant when a French lady approached our table and asked if we were American citizens. I told her “yes”, and she said “Oh, I’m so sorry” I said “for what” She said “you don’t know”? (at that point I was getting frightened by her statement and demeanor because I didn’t know what she was about to tell me).

I said to her, “KNOW WHAT?” (with a little anger in my voice due to the fear). She said, “Your twin towers in New York have been destroyed by terrorists.” My heart sank. I couldn’t believe what she just told me. Shelley (my wife) and I went back to our room and turned on CNN. I couldn’t believe my eyes. All I could say was, “Oh Jesus, oh Jesus.” As we watched TV we didn’t say a word to each other. We just kept looking at the TV in disbelief. In a few minutes my thoughts were with my family and friends in NJ/NY. I tried to call but to no avail. All the lines were tied up. You just couldn’t call out.

We decided to go out of our room and find other Americans. We wanted to be with our “own people.” As we walked through the lobby we’d listened to people talking with each other and when we came across an American we would stop and talk with them. We needed to share with others (only Americans). After the initial shock of this horrific attack, all Shelley and I wanted to do was to be back on United States soil. I know we were in paradise there, but we just wanted to be home with our family and friends.

Finally, late that Tuesday night, we got through to our loved ones. Thank God everyone was safe and accounted for. So we spent the rest of our week either watching CNN or hanging out with our American brothers and sisters.

And Thank Jesus, we arrived home early Monday morning September 17th. And yes, when we arrived home I did kissed the ground in Newark New Jersey.

Love to all,
Frank & Shelley Rubino - NJ