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Published on Sep 11, 2011
Perhaps the most upsetting images of this Islamist attack were those of the desperate men and women who were forced to jump from the top of the WTC. At over 1,000 feet above ground level and on broken window ledges, for how long did these poor souls contemplate that unimaginable fall? The human desire to live and hold on was slowly extinguished by soaring heat, smoke and hopelessness. Eyewitnesses from adjacent towers describe seeing some victims making the sign of the cross before jumping, others victims were seen jumping one after the other, in small groups a few seconds apart perhaps choosing to die together. All of these innocent victims of terrorism should never be forgotten and their families deserve our eternal sympathy and understanding.
God bless them and God bless The United States of America.
From a Sept. 8, 2009 Esquire article by Tom Junod titled "The Falling Man"
They began jumping not long after the first plane hit the North Tower, not long after the fire started. They kept jumping until the tower fell. They jumped through windows already broken and then, later, through windows they broke themselves. They jumped to escape the smoke and the fire; they jumped when the ceilings fell and the floors collapsed; they jumped just to breathe once more before they died. They jumped continually, from all four sides of the building, and from all floors above and around the building's fatal wound. They jumped from the offices of Marsh & McLennan, the insurance company; from the offices of Cantor Fitzgerald, the bond-trading company; from Windows on the World, the restaurant on the 106th and 107th floors -- the top. For more than an hour and a half, they streamed from the building, one after another, consecutively rather than en masse, as if each individual required the sight of another individual jumping before mustering the courage to jump him or her self. One photograph, taken at a distance, shows people jumping in perfect sequence, like parachutists, forming an arc composed of three plummeting people, evenly spaced. Indeed, there were reports that some tried parachuting, before the force generated by their fall ripped the drapes, the tablecloths, the desperately gathered fabric, from their hands. They were all, obviously, very much alive on their way down, and their way down lasted an approximate count of ten seconds. They were all, obviously, not just killed when they landed but destroyed, in body though not, one prays, in soul.
From a Sept 11 2001 Truthquake. com article 9/11 Victims Forgotten
The only research that comes close to being an official account conducted by the National Institute for Standards and Technology. NIST analyzed camera footage and still photographs, and counted 104 jumpers, often recording the floor and exact window from which they left. All but three leapt from the first building to be hit -- the North Tower. The second plane struck the South Tower 16 minutes later but it collapsed first, giving people less time to react. The first jumper is recorded plunging from the North Tower's 149th window of the 93rd floor on the north face of the building at 8.51 am, just over four minutes after it was hit by the first hijacked Boeing 757 between the 93rd and 99th floors.Sometimes the people falling were separated by an interval of just a second. At one point nine people fell in six seconds from five adjacent windows; at another, 13 people fell in two minutes. Twenty minutes after the building was struck, two people fell simultaneously from the same window on the 95th floor. At least four jumpers tried to climb to other windows for safety, but then lost their grips. One person climbed from the 93rd floor to the 92nd, clinging to the window's edge before falling just one second after someone else fell from the same window -- number 215 on the east face of the tower. The early jumpers came from the crash zone where the plane entered the building -- the offices of the insurance brokers Marsh & McLennan.The last jumper fell just as the North Tower collapsed 102 minutes after the building had been hit.