“Could you please tell us where we are?”
That was the question asked by Vernon and Winona Howe in front of the Rhombus Hotel in downtown Chilliwack in the Sept. 14, 2001 page 3 story of The Chilliwack Progress written by reporter Jennifer Feinberg. The couple were photographed by Jenna Hauck, and both Feinberg and Hauck are still with The Progress, 20 years later.
(See below for larger images of the pages from that edition with the stories in question.)
The Howes’ United Airlines flight was diverted from Los Angeles to Vancouver after the 9/11 terrorist attacks shocked the world and shut down air traffic across the United States.
The Howes, like thousands of people flying on planes in the U.S. that day, were beset by delays and confusion, and after arriving on a bus in Chilliwack late on Sept. 11, 2001, they literally didn’t know where on Earth they were.
Sept. 11, 2001 is a day that lives in infamy. Terrorists hijacked two planes that took down the Twin Towers in New York City, a third crashed into the headquarters of the U.S. military, the Pentagon, and heroic passengers on a fourth flight, United Airlines Flight 93, stopped the terrorists from hitting the White House or the U.S. Capital by attempting to gain control over the cockpit. That plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania.
Today (Saturday, Sept. 11, 2021) is the the 20th anniversary of those attacks.
As a community newspaper in Chilliwack, British Columbia, we only cover local news or events that directly affect the community. 9/11 was so massive, it affected just about every community in North America.
In that same Sept. 14, 2001 edition, reporter Penny Lett wrote a story about the many ways you could help victims with blood donations. Her story also prompted an interest in Chilliwack’s Emergency Program, also known as the Disaster Community Assistance Program.
The page 1 article in The Progress that day, also by reporter Jennifer Feinberg, came with the headline “Terror too close for comfort,” and the subhead, or deck as is the term used in newspapers, “Chilliwack quick to react with offers of blood, money, and volunteers on a day no one will forget.”
The story came with a photo by then editor Rick Collins of a local Starbucks manager telling customers the store was closed after the terrorist attacks of 9/11.
“As an American corporation, they’re probably concerned that Starbucks outlets could become a target, too,” a worker explained to a customer.
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