“In all those published accounts and audio clips, and in the interviews I conducted, one theme never ceases to amaze me: the sheer randomness of how the day unfolded, who lived, who died, who was touched, and who escaped.” Garrett Graff in The Atlantic: When the terrorist attacks happened, trivial decisions spared people’s lives—or sealed their fate. On 9/11, Luck Meant Everything. (It means a whole lot every other day too…)

+ Graff has written an oral history of 9/11. Here is a powerful excerpt from Politico: Deena Burnett, wife of Tom Burnett, passenger, United Flight 93: “It was silent, and I could feel my heart racing. [On the phone with me,] Tom said, ‘We’re waiting until we’re over a rural area. We’re going to take back the airplane.’ I became very frightened and I begged, ‘No, no, Tom. Just sit down, be still, be quiet, and don’t draw attention to yourself.’ He said, ‘No, Deena. If they’re going to crash this plane, we’re going to have to do something.'”

+ “In the picture, he departs from this earth like an arrow. Although he has not chosen his fate, he appears to have, in his last instants of life, embraced it. If he were not falling, he might very well be flying. He appears relaxed, hurtling through the air. He appears comfortable in the grip of unimaginable motion.” Tom Junod in Esquire: The Falling Man. An unforgettable story.

+ Buzzfeed: These Harrowing Photos Show The Brave 9/11 First Responders In Action.