After witnessing attacks, she looked homeward
On Sept. 11, Dana Macario was walking to her office at the World Trade Center. She saw smoke pouring from the North Tower, then a plane hit the South Tower. In the days that followed, she felt far away from her family in Seattle.
How 6 local lives changed after 9/11
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The terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, caused profound shock, horror, fear, anger and sorrow for Americans — and for some, lasting change. Six Puget Sound-area residents tell us how the events of that day played out in their lives.
In the days after she stood on a debris-strewn street in Lower Manhattan and watched a plane fly into the World Trade Center where she worked, Dana Macario began to think of home.
The Burien native had graduated from Western Washington University in 2000 and, "looking for a post-college adventure," followed her boyfriend to New York.
She'd landed a job with a law firm that occupied floors 37-40 of the South Tower.
On the morning of Sept. 11, Macario was walking from the subway to her office when she saw a knot of people looking skyward as smoke poured from the North Tower. Then they watched transfixed as a plane appeared to deliberately fly into its twin.
In the days that followed she would come to feel how truly far away she was from her family in Seattle.
It occurred to her that most of the people she would want at her side had she been hurt that morning were 3,000 miles away.
She began giving serious thought to coming home.
"You are uneasy about leaving the house," she said. "Afterward, there were many threats to the city. We lived in Brooklyn and felt safe there, but the thought of going back [into Manhattan] had become frightening."
Many people she knew who weren't from New York were going home to be close to family. So it didn't come as a shock to her co-workers when, in early February, she gave notice. "Everyone was supportive."
She moved in with her mother, "started saving up to buy a fun condo in Belltown," and eventually found work at the Seattle law firm of Lane Powell, where she met her husband. They now have two toddlers and live in Issaquah.
"Of course my life changed as a result of that day — in some good ways."
She said it was strange initially to work in a place with people who were not traumatized by what had happened on that day. "There was a different feeling around the office," she said. "It was OK working in a tower."
While Macario has since been back to New York, she's not visited Ground Zero.
"Now several years have passed and I have children," she said. "I think I might."
— Lornet Turnbull, Seattle Times staff reporter
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