Visiting the Flight 93 Memorial

September 3, 2016  
Categories: Op-Eds

Visiting the Flight 93 Memorial

Tim the Russian

Everybody remembers that day. Where they were, what they were doing. Every detail.

I learned of the September 11th attacks walking out of a hotel bathroom, with a toothbrush in my mouth. The room had a very small tube TV, 25” at most. There was a small round table in front of the TV. I remember every detail of that room just like I remember every detail of that day. The breakfast I did not eat. The look on peoples faces. Emergency vehicle convoys. Groups of police vehicles huddles together, with officers just outside, watching the sky.

If you go outside and look up, no matter where you are, there are contrails. During morning hours it is typical to have over 3000 aircraft in the airspace above United States. If you are by a large city, you will see many, if you are in the desert of Nevada, you will see a few. But the airplanes, like stars at night, are always there.

Not on that day. The sky on that sad day became empty.

Unknown to anybody, an incredible story of heroism was unfolding aboard one of the only airplanes still in the air. Flight 93 just made a sharp turn in the skies of Ohio and began its deadly track towards our capital. There is nothing I can write to pay proper tribute to the heroes on that flight, the heroes who saved many others with their actions that day.

The Flight 93 Memorial is sad, moving, and incredible. It captures the essence of good, and pays a humble yet powerful tribute.

The memorial is located about two hours drive from Pittsburgh, and three hours from the White House. If you’re ever around this part of the country, the memorial is a must visit. But many folks don’t have an ability to travel that far, and I wanted to share a few pictures of my experience.

I can’t do a justice describing the memorial, so I would rather just share few things that stuck with me:

The entire site is built around the last few seconds of the flight. The black pathway to the visitor center follows the flight route. The aircraft was just 100 ft above ground in that exact spot on that dreadful day.

This view is from a hill in beautiful Somerset County. The overlook. The same view Flight 93’s passengers saw just seconds before perishing. The last thing they ever saw.

Black. Black walkways, black benches. This place was a strip mine many years ago. Black signifies the coal that was mined here.

120/60 angle on everything. Those are the typical angles at which a new tree branch grows. Many trees were destroyed at the impact site, and many new trees were planted around the memorial.

The gate to the impact site only opens for the family of the fallen.


Thank you. Our gratitude to the heroes, and our sorrow to their families and friends.

God bless.


Learn more about the memorial here

Learn more about the passengers and crew here



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Timur Kupa 1

Timur Kupa 7About the Author: Timur Aleksandrovich is former taiga-frolicking proud bacon- and big-dog-loving American who ain’t from around these parts. We can’t tell you where he comes from, but we can say he grew up wearing a fuzzy hat, loves vodka (which he pronounces WODka) and never does anything without a plan. Though his profession has nothing to do with anything tactically sexy (that we’re gonna tell you about), Tim knows his way around guns and gear. Luckily he made so much money in the 90s selling off Sukhoi Su-47s, souped up BTR-90s and that one cherry MD-160 Ekranoplan to Jacobim Mugatu he can still afford all kinds of cool toys. Timka is an extraordinarily proficient shooter and prefers timepieces that weigh as much as a small child. He is evil genius smart, retard strong and easygoing as an Amish guy stoned on Sunday. You may have read about him in a couple things written by Tolstoy and Mikhail Sholokhov (or maybe it was Pasternak, we can never remember). We hang around with him not so much because we like him but because he sounds like Col. Strelnikov when he talks, and because he lets his Great Danes wear shemaghs. We’re still holding out hope he’ll someday show up to the range with an original 1983 Jatimatic 9x19mm SMG and lots of ammo. A desultory meteorologist and member in good standing of our “Everyman Tactical” element, Tim is a graduate of Grosse Pointe High School and is a Martin Blank cynicist in good standing. Most of this we’re just making up of course, but he really does look good in those shaggy hats and he really is gay for watches and knives. If you’re the stalking sort you can creep on him by watching him on the live webcam he has in his outhouse on the steppe right here.

Grunts: desultory.


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Timur Alexander

Timur Alexander

About the Author

1 Comment

  1. Joe

    Thank you for posting your pictures. I’m going to start a one to two year post retirement tour of the US in a couple months, this is definitely on my list.

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