Montville Man in WTC: 9/11 Was 'Attack on All of Us'
'We were attacked for being American. ... I just happened to be in the building,' Ian Bernstein said.
Ian Bernstein was on the 60th floor of the south tower working for Morgan Stanley when the first plane struck on 9/11. The Montville resident was having breakfast at his desk.
"You heard a loud noise and looked outside and you could see lots of paper kind of flying through the air and one guy came around and said he watched an American Airlines plane going into a building," he said.
A security guard started evacuating employees to the 44th floor. There, another security official said the safest place would be back at their desks. The second plane hit. Glass came flying in and the building shook. They continued going downstairs, meanwhile passing firefighters running into the building. Both security guards later died in the attack, he said.
During the evacuation, Bernstein bumped into his adminstrative assistant, who said, "Don't make me go back in that building."
"I looked up and saw the flames coming out of our building," Bernstein said. He told her he didn't think they would be going back into the building for a while.
Ten years later, he doesn't like to think about what happened that day.
"I think I block it out more than anything else," Bernstein said. "I don't go and watch all the 9/11 movies. I just can't. ... I say a little prayer on 9/11, but personally I really don't want to spend a lot of time thinking about it."
He said 9/11 was an attack on all Americans.
"We were attacked for being American. It wasn't personal. It was an attack on all of us. I just happened to be in the building."