Experience in 9-11 Attack

Qiang Ma (Johnny)

My dear friends,

This is Ma, Qiang (Johnny). I want to thank all of you that e-mailed me and called me (my wife picked most of your calls) to express your concerns and show your supports. My work place, World Financial Center, is right next to the WTC. It is completely shut down today. However, I am all right. So I am able to write to you today.

During the attack, I was attending Amex Fraud Team annual meeting at Brooklyn. When the shocking news broke, the EVP was presenting the very work I am currently involved in. It was only after talking to some senior employees that I realized how close we are to the tragedy. According to the tradition, we would hold the meeting at WTC yesterday. If that is the case, my story is gonna be much different. However, since Amex lost so much money during the first half of this year, we decided to hold this year’s meeting at a cheaper place. This is how I was able to avoid this mess. Life can be so dramatic. A threat to my job security becomes a bless to my life security. However, I did spend 9 hours to go home. When I finally arrived Jersey City through ferry, I was required to take a cold-water shower with my suit on for decontamination purpose. What a welcome.

My apartment building is facing the WTC, on the other side of the Hudson River. Every night, I am able to enjoy the nice lower town skyline while walking along the coastline. The day before the attack, we wife and I was talking about the WTC. The top portions of the twin building were covered by heavy cloud, which made the building quite scary at night. We never realized that was our last time to see the construction. We took some pictures of the downtown without the Twin Building last night. It is like something we can only see in movies.

To conclude, I am glad that all my family and friends are fine during this ordeal. And I wish your family and your friends are okay too.

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