Thursday back | Humboldt County ‘shocked’ over 9/11 attacks – Times-Standard
With Tuesday’s announcement that President Joe Biden planned to withdraw troops from Afghanistan by September 11, 2021, The Times-Standard looks back on the days after the terrorist attacks and the days before the US airstrikes .
On September 18, 2001, then-President George W. Bush issued a joint resolution authorizing the use of force against those responsible for the September 11 attacks.
The next day, The Times-Standard reported how the terrorist attacks hit the house. Journalist James Tressler wrote, “Even here life is turned upside down,” in a report on the massive changes at the Humboldt County Airport in McKinleyville.
“After being closed for three days after the attacks, the airport reopened (September 14, 2001) under the most severe lockdown in airport history,” Tressler reported. “All curbside check-ins have been banned and local law enforcement is carrying out round-the-clock inspections of passengers and baggage. Parking is scarce because the FAA does not want a car parked within 150 feet of the building. “
Then-airport manager Dan Horton told the Humboldt County Supervisory Board the airport needed $ 2 million for security measures, much of which would be covered by the FAA .
On the same day, The Times-Standard also reported on a patriotic fundraiser at Eureka High School that included sales of ribbons to benefit the Red Cross. Classrooms at all Eureka schools had water bottles for donating to the Red Cross and students were encouraged to “wear our national colors”.
There was also a memorial service planned at Fort Humboldt in the days following the attacks to honor the lives lost and “to honor those who still stand, fight, protect and comfort us who are still here.”
On October 2, 2001, 30 local members of the National Guard were activated and were told they were sent to San Francisco.
One of those called to duty was a single mother of four from SPC. Juanita Terry who worked two jobs: one as a security chief in Cher-ae Heights and another as a private investigator. She said her children would stay with her mother during her deployment.
“They can’t live with me,” she told The Times-Standard, stressing that she was confident she would be able to return to work after her deployment.
On October 8, 2001, the banner title informed local readers on that day of the launch of US airstrikes in Afghanistan.
Additionally, The Times-Standard reported on another tribute as more than 25 local agency firefighters drove through Route 101, starting in McKinleyville and crossing Arcata, Eureka, Loleta, Ferndale, Rio Dell, in Scotland before ending in Fortuna.
On October 9, 2001, The Times-Standard spoke with then-senator Wesley Chesbro, who was somewhat optimistic despite the recent attacks.
“I guess we’re having a tough year, but maybe not much more than that,” he told reporter David Anderson.
The next day, The Times-Standard reported that the 30 members of the National Guard, who were mostly police officers and military engineers, would likely be sent to Washington state.
The exact locations have not been released, Major Stan Zezotarski told Times-Standard reporter James Faulk.
“We don’t want to give bad guys or terrorist cells information that is not needed,” Zezotarski said.
On October 12, 2001, The Times-Standard printed a photo of a large American flag draped over the Fifth Street side of Eureka Town Hall with then-mayor Nancy Flemming and Councilor Jack McKellar. The draping, carried out the day before, marked the first month of the attacks.
Fast forward almost 20 years: On Wednesday, Biden told the nation, “It’s time to end America’s longest war.” There are approximately 2,500 American troops left in Afghanistan. Biden plans to withdraw all troops before the 20th anniversary of the attacks.
Ruth Schneider can be reached at 707-441-0520.