Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"Boatlift" and The Maritime Role In 9/11 Exhibit - GOOD TALK WEDNESDAY 9/14

So, one more serious 9/11 post. This video has been going around on Facebook and I thought I would share it here. I was actually involve in the boatlift (which I've seen referred to as the "American Dunkirk") myself, ended up at Pier 63 (where the Amberjack V was running along with a couple of other party boats) after fleeing the WTC by subway (I was lucky enough to get on what had to have been the last train through moments after the 2nd plane hit) and spent the afternoon helping out. I was still somewhat in shock myself, and it was SO good to have something simple yet concretely useful to do with myself during those hours immediately after the attack. The video focuses on downtown, but pretty much anywhere there was a pier that could accomodate any boat that could take passengers, there were boats taking people across.

Now, if that's of interest to you, and you live in the Tri-State area, you might want to think about going to take in the exhibit that's now on view on the historic steamship Lilac. Produced by PortSide NewYork, this is:

"a multi-media exhibit (photography, videos and oral history) and presentation about the extraordinary and little-known maritime role in 9/11, from evacuation to rubble removal". The boatlift is quite well-known; I'll be very interested in seeing the information about what went on in the following months, too.

HIGHLIGHT of the exhibit: tomorrow night, Wednesday, 9/14, Carolina Salguero, current director of PortSide NewYork and a photojournalist who documented 9/11, and Jessica DuLong, journalist and Chief Engineer or retired fireboat John J. Harvey, will be giving a talk. Click here for full details.

Should be fascinating.

And btw, if you want to know a little more about what I did with myself that day, here's my story, as written for my family that evening, from the shelter of the apartment of some friends who took me in for the night. Same thing I link to every year, just hadn't done it yet this year.


PeconicPuffin said...

Hi Bonnie,

I don't know if we've ever talked about the boat lift. Two dear friends running barefoot with their young daughter in their arms trying to find air to breath were picked up by a boat in lower Manhattan (they were Battery Park City residents) and dropped off in New Jersey. May have saved their lives...certainly got them out of hell.

bonnie said...

I don't think we did - this honestly isn't something I talk about too much. Way too heavy for pleasant conversation - I have gotten to the point where I can edit myself a bit but for a long time, if you asked me about my 9/11 it was like you'd hit a playback button and I'd just unspiel the whole story beginning to end - all the while just sort of cringeing inside hearing myself.

I am still so glad I got out of there by train & was up in Chelsea when they went down. Terrible stuff. Things weren't one bit normal at Pier 63, but compared to what was going on downtown, we must have seemed downright peaceful.