Shannon Ferguson has enjoyed taking photographs her entire life.
When a friend treated her to a helicopter tour of New York City in 1999 she grabbed her camera.
Flying above the Twin Towers, Croton resident Shannon took advantage of her viewpoint and took photographs of the iconic World Trade Center.
Two years later on Sept. 11, 2011, terrorists flew two planes into those buildings, killing 3,000 people. Shannon’s spent two days as a secondary responder to the tragedy.
“There are just some things you just can’t photograph, and that was something I did not want to photograph,” Shannon said of the destruction.
Although she couldn’t bring herself to visit the tragic site, Rob took some photos of the shocking scene while he was there.
“It was all seared into my mind watching the TV for four days straight,” Shannon said.
When Patch contacted Rob to interview him helping at Ground Zero, Shannon dug up the photos above. They had been tucked away in a 9/11 box in their home for the last ten years.
“It was kind of eerie looking at these photos,” Shannon said.
“Even ten years later, when I hear people talking about it gives me chills. It makes me sick to my stomach to see what happened and I get emotional just seeing this stuff on TV.”
Shannon saved her photos of the Twin Towers, before and after, to be able to teach her future children about what happened on Sept. 11, 2001 and how “our country lost our sense of security that day.”
View the photo gallery of Shannon's photos of the Twin Towers, taken in 1999, Rob's photos of Ground Zero, taken the days following Sept. 11, and Patch Reader J.J. Guaragno's photos of the construction of the new World Trade Center Memorial.
As we approach 10th anniversary of the attacks on the United States, check back with Patch to see how the events changed the lives of Iowans -- and the country -- forever.
Patch, through its parent company, AOL, is involved in a project called ActionAmerica. The project is a collaboration of several corporations, individuals and non-profits organizations designed to honor those affected by the events of 9/11 and unify the country through postive action.