Never Forget: Latina Readers Share Touching Personal Stories About 9/11

Never Forget: Latina Readers Share Touching Personal Stories About 9/11

Life changed for the entire world 15 years ago, when a brutal strike on the U.S. left the mighty World Trade Center fallen, and thousands of innocent lives lost in New York City and Washington D.C. The nation was stripped of its innocence when it came to terrorist strikes at home, and the post 9/11 era took on a meaning as benchmark in history as B.C. in the bible.

As years go by, the aftermath seems to be stuff of documentaries and subtle reminders that we only collectively pay attention when the anniversary runs around every year. But the children left motherless, the fiancés who lost forever love, and mothers who heard their children's last words before phone calls faded to black, the memory and the loss is constant. But even in the tragedy, they have become the most inspiring pillars of strength.

It's an honor to present the stories of Michelle Mendez, Alexia Ramona Costanza, and Thea Trinidad, three Latina readers who bravely shared their own stories of loss and survival with us fifteen years later.

We're sending all of our love and prayers to the grieving families, survivors and the 3,000 angels we gained on that terrible day with no cloud in the sky.

Thea Trinidad

Angel: Thea's father, Michael Trinidad, 33-year-old telecom analyst at Cantor Fitzgerald

I'm a 25-year-old professional wrestler of Puerto Rican descent. My 9/11 story is as follows:

Before I even reached my eleventh birthday, I had experienced more heartache and strife than many people do in their entire lives. The morning of what is now simply known as 9/11 was not unlike countless others for my. But a phone call to my mother would quickly change that. My father, Michael Trinidad was a 33-year-old telecom analyst for the firm Cantor Fitzgerald, which was on the 103rd floor of the North Tower in the World Trade Center. My parents were divorced at the time, but remained close.

He told my mom, ‘I’m calling to say goodbye, I know that I can’t make it out, there isn’t a way I can get out of here. Tell the kids I love them.” My mother refused to accept what her ex-husband was telling her. She wasn’t hearing any of that. She said, "No, you’re going to tell (the kids) yourself, you’re going to find a way out of there.” My mother herself at one time worked inside the Twin Towers.

I felt like it was an out-of-body experience. I knew I could talk to my dad for the last time because he was on the phone. I could have grabbed it. I could have said something. But I was so numb, I didn’t move. I just sat there and I just observed everything that was happening. And then, at 9:14 a.m., the line cut off.

I went through years of denial and depression. And then I thought, well what was it that dad and I shared the most? It was wrestling. Once I realized that and saw what his dreams were, what my dreams (were), I said to myself, I can do this for me and for him and this is what is going to pull me out of this.

Michael Trinidad’s death may have spurred me into a dark and forgettable time in her life, but it was his memory that would lift me out.

Read more on page 2 >>>