UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY-TV) – As the 20th Anniversary of 9/11 nears, State Senator Joseph Griffo reflects on his experience in New York City that tragic day.
“The best way I can describe it was a roller coaster of emotions because it began with disbelief and shock. Then it was followed by sorrow and sadness. Then it was anger and ultimately it was just a surreal experience that this was taking place.” – Senator Joseph Griffo
During this time the Senator was the Mayor of Rome and he was in the city for a bond sale. He and members of his staff got into NYC the night of September 10th and were staying at a hotel in Midtown. They woke up the next morning turned on the news, looked outside and saw a commotion. It wasn’t until the second plane hit that they realized what was going on.
“We knew immediately, everybody I think started to understand that this was an attack. It was not a coincidence or accident” – Senator Joseph Griffo
The senator and his team were far enough away from the towers to be safe but close enough to see and experience what was happening. He recalls walking out of the hotel and seeing people coming out of the subways trying to figure out how they were going to get home.
“There was a comradery that day out of the pain and suffering that everyone was experiencing and the uncertainty and the disbelief.” – Senator Joseph Griffo
Two decades later the senator wants to make sure people remember how they felt during that fateful day.
“It’s a day that I think not only having been there to experience it firsthand, because everyone will know and remember where they were, it was that kind of defining moment. But ultimately the raw emotions I think we need to continue to connect with.” – Senator Joseph Griffo