Former FBI Agent on the Scene at Pentagon on 9/11

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

You probably remember where you were on September 11, 2001.
For one Bowling Green lawyer, it's a day he will never forget.
He was in Washington, D.C. working for the FBI when one of the hijacked planes crashed into the Pentagon.

If you take a look at the official After Action Report for the Pentagon, it's easy to recall what happened in Washington, D.C. on September 11, 2001.

"It has details, a timeline, every specific agency involvement and what they did that day, and the planning. What went right and what did not go right as far as response and rescue efforts and collection of evidence," said former FBI Agent and Bowling Green lawyer, Chris McKinney.

But former FBI Agent Chris McKinney doesn't need the book to remember.

He was there.

"I did not see the plane strike the Pentagon, but certainly saw the smoke come up and immediately responded," said McKinney.

Within minutes, McKinney was on the scene of the crash.

"Immediately started trying to make efforts to get anybody inside of the building in harms way out," said McKinney.

McKinney recalls just how crazy Washington, D.C. was after the plane crashed into the Pentagon.

"It was absolutely pandemonium. It truly was. People were trying to get out of the city as quickly as possible. You could not communicate with anybody via cell phone. My wife was 9 months pregnant at that point, and we were very concerned. I was concerned for her, and she was concerned for me. I don't think I talked to her for about 48 hours," said McKinney.

At one point McKinney says they even had to clear the Pentagon area completely because there was an aircraft in route that the FAA wasn't able to communicate with.

"Of course, that is the one that ultimately crashed in Pennsylvania through the heroic efforts of a number of passengers, but it was of course headed toward Washington, D.C.," said McKinney.

Even in the days following the crash at the Pentagon, it was a site that was hard to grasp.

"I can remember coming into work several days later and the Pentagon still had smoke coming out of the top of it. From a personal perspective, you're just feeling shocked...complete disbelief that it's slowly starting to sink into your mind that you are under attack as a country," said McKinney.

An attack and a day that everyone, including Chris McKinney, will forever look back on and remember.

"It is my hope that all Americans will certainly take a moment on September 11th to think about the lives that were lost there. It was the worst attack ever on American soil and it will never happen
again as long as we never forget what happened that day," said McKinney.

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