#NeverForget: Remembering September 11 in Photographs

The September 11 attacks were an unforgettable time in U.S. history, and still fresh in the memories of Americans today. Nineteen years later, we revisit photos and news coverage of the tragic event that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people.

On the morning of Tuesday, September 11, 2001, hijackers on American Airlines Flight 11 hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m., killing everyone on board and hundreds of people inside the building. It was initially viewed as an accident until, just a little over 15 minutes later at 9:03 a.m., hijackers crashed United Airlines Flight 175 into the South Tower, killing those on board and several hundred inside the edifice.

At 9:31 a.m., President George W. Bush addressed the American people in a briefing from Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, FL, where he was visiting at the time of the attacks. He announced that the tragedy that occurred in New York City was "an apparent terrorist attack on our country."

Just a few minutes after Bush's speech, hijackers abroad American Airlines Flight 77 crash into the outer wall between the first and second floor of the Pentagon, killing all 59 passengers and 125 employees in the building. A fourth aircraft, United Airlines Flight 93, crashed into an open field at 10:03 a.m. in Somerset County, Pennsylvania after the 33 passengers aboard the plane staged an uprising against the hijackers.

In a national address later that night, Bush called the attacks "evil, despicable acts of terror," and assured Americans and allies that we would "stand together to win the war against terrorism."

Today, as we continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, this year's annual remembrance ceremonies will obviously look different from previous years. Dueling ceremonies will take place at New York City's One World Trade Center and at the corner of Liberty and Church streets, where families will be able to either hear or read out the names of loved ones lost that day. The Tribute in Light—almost on the verge of cancellation this year—will also take place after sunset, displaying two beams of light where the Twin Towers once stood. Meanwhile, a private ceremony at the United Airlines Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania will be held in remembrance.

No matter how you choose to reflect on this day, images of what happened on 9/11 will forever serve as a reminder of the resilience we had—and still have—as a nation in the face of tragedy. As the world continues to change, the suffering and strength of that day will always remain a part of us.

September 11 Retrospective
NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 11, 2001: Smoke pours from the twin towers of the World Trade Center after they were hit by two hijacked airliners in a terrorist attack September 11, 2001 in New York City. Friday marks the 19th anniversary of the attacks. Robert Giroux/Getty Images/Getty
Twin Towers Second Plane
Hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center and explodes at 9:03 a.m. on September 11, 2001 in New York City. The crash of two airliners hijacked by terrorists loyal to al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden and subsequent collapse of the twin towers killed nearly 3,000 people. Spencer Platt/Getty Images/Getty
9/11 Building
People hang from windows of World Trade Center after two hijacked passenger planes hit the building September 11, 2001 in New York City in a terrorist attack against the United States. Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images/Getty
Firefighter Weeps On September 11
A firefighter breaks down after the World Trade Center buildings collapsed September 11, 2001 after two hijacked airplanes slammed into the twin towers in a terrorist attack that killed nearly 3,000 people. Mario Tama/Getty Images/Getty
World Trade Center Attacked
People watch World Trade Center burn September 11, 2001 after two hijacked airplanes slammed into the twin towers in New York City. Spencer Platt/Getty Images/Getty
World Trade Center Hit by Two Planes
Policemen and firemen run away from the huge dust cloud as the World Trade Center's Tower One collapses. Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images/Getty
George W Bush 9/11
U.S. President George W. Bush has his early morning school reading event interrupted by his Chief of Staff Andrew Card (L) 11 September, 2001, shortly after news of the New York City airplane crashes was available in Sarasota, Florida. PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
World Trade Center Attack
People walk in the street around the area where the World Trade Center buildings collapsed on September 11, 2001. Mario Tama/Getty Images/Getty
Alice Hoglan (2nd R) responds to questions
Alice Hoglan (2nd R) responds to questions about her son, Mark Bingham, who phoned her from United Airlines Flight 93 before it crashed outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 11 September 2001, as her brother Lee Hoglan (L), sister, Candyce Hogland (2nd L), and sister-in-law, Kathy Hoglan (R), listen while meeting with the media in Saratoga, California. The plane was one of four airliners commandeered by air pirates in a deadly terrorist operation that also targeted the Word Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington, DC. JOHN G. MABANGLO/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
Attack on New York City
An unidentified New York City firefighter walks away from Ground Zero after the collapse of the Twin Towers September 11, 2001 in New York City. The World Trade Center's Twin Towers and the Pentagon were attacked by terrorists using commercial airliners as missiles. Anthony Correia/Getty Images/Getty
Pedestrians walk across the Brooklyn Bridge
Pedestrians walk across the Brooklyn Bridge away from the burning World Trade towers before their collapse 11 September, 2001. HENNY RAY ABRAMS/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
Hijacked Jet Crashes into Pentagon
Recue workers and Pentagon personnel attend to the wounded outisde the Pentagon after a hijacked plane crashed into the building September 11, 2001 in Washington, DC. Greg Whitesell/Getty Images/Getty
World Trade Center Attacked
People evacuate the area around the World Trade Center after it was hit by two planes September 11, 2001 in New York City. Mario Tama/Getty Images/Getty
Firefighters during the September 11th terrorist attack
Firefighters embrace one another as they try to grapple with the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Matt Moyer/Corbis via Getty Images/Getty
Rescue workers continue their search
Rescue workers continue their search for bodies as smoke rises from the rubble of the World Trade Center on September 13, 2001 in New York. Cleaning the 1.8 million tons of wreckage on-site took 9 months. BETH A. KEISER/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
9/11 Rescuers
Rescue workers, including a dog trained to sniff for survivors, take a break near the wreckage of the World Trade Center on September, 24 2001 in New York. Nearly two weeks after the terrorist attacks brought down the Twin Towers, families of the victims and rescue workers have begun to face the reality that many of the thousands of missing victims may never be recovered. TED WARREN/AFP via Getty Images/Getty
The Rubble of the World Trade Center
The rubble of the World Trade Center smolders following the attacks. Porter Gifford/Corbis via Getty Images/Getty
9/11 Vigil
People cover themselves with an American Flag on the US Capitol grounds during a candlelight vigil on September 12, 2001 to remember victims who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks. Mark Wilson/Getty Images/Getty