Local residents feature in paper’s 9/11 anniversary series

9/11 attack on New York

Two Bradley Stoke residents have featured in a series of articles published by the Bristol Evening Post to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the USA.

Sara Jones was visiting New York en route to Atlanta on the day of the attacks. She was walking in Battery Park, just a few hundred metres away from the Twin Towers, when the first plane struck.

“We heard a loud bang, but didn’t think much of it at first – we were in a strange city, so there were lots of unfamiliar noises.”

“But then we started seeing people looking up at the Twin Towers, and as we stepped further away, we could see the smoke billowing out.”

“But even then, we had no idea how much danger we were about to find ourselves in.”

Sara witnessed the second plane crashing into the South Tower 17 minutes later and had to take refuge in a nearby building as the towers collapsed.

Read the full account of Sara’s terrifying experience in last Wednesday’s Evening Post.

In a further article, published on Saturday, Sachin Singhal, an active member of the Hindu community in Bradley Stoke, recounts how he followed the day’s momentous events on television.

Sachin says that the anti-Islamic backlash which followed the attacks impacted people of many different faiths and cultures living in this country.

“The Hindu and Sikh communities, as well as Muslims, were badly affected by the Islamophobic fall-out of 9/11. Racists used the terrorist attacks in America as an excuse to attack people in this country.”

“They didn’t stop to ask whether you were actually a Muslim – they saw your dark skin, and you became a target.”

“I myself had acid thrown over my car after the 7/7 bombings a few years later. It was all very frightening.”

Following his first-hand experience of racist attacks, Sachin went on to be appointed Vice Chair of South Gloucestershire’s Independent Advisory Group (IAG), which works with the local police force on issues of disability, age, ethnicity, faith or sexual orientation.

Related link: America marks 10 years since 9/11 (BBC News)

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