It is hard to believe that it has been 22 years since the day America changed forever. We of course are talking about the anniversary of September 11th, 2001 when America was under attack.

Between the two twin towers in New York City, the Pentagon in Washington DC to the plane that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, the whole world stopped and was in shock at the events that occurred that day.

Do you remember what you were doing that day when you heard the news? I certainly do. I was working the day shift at the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Department here in Calcasieu Parish. The day shift was from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Mike Soileau
Mike Soileau a Policeman? (Photo provided by Mike Soileau)

I was assigned to Sulphur that day. I was patrolling the streets of Sulphur that day and that morning I was sitting at a school zone watching for vehicles speeding and running stop signs in the school zones.

At around 9:15 am by that time both towers had been hit by planes, Our dispatcher came over the air and in an intense direct voice said "All units, stand by for traffic". When we would get a message like that in the past, we knew something major was happening.

She came over the air and started dispatching units on the west side of the parish to different locations. One was sent to the Sulphur courthouse while others were sent to the different city halls of DeQuincy, Vinton, Westlake, and Sulphur.

I was dispatched to the South Sulphur substation which was located at the Carlyss airport. I was advised to secure the airport, as they were shutting down all air traffic leaving or landing. I didn't know why they would request I go do that but when you work as a police officer, sometimes you just find out when you get there.

Getty Images
Getty Images

When I walked in, I saw everyone huddled around the television and when I walked up to the TV, I saw the two towers on fire and I knew then exactly why I was there. We then secured the substation and the airport.

Then throughout the day, more Calcasieu parish officers came in on their days off and helped secure buildings, courthouses and federal buildings in Calcasieu parish. Once my shift was over, I went home and watched TV for hours in disbelief of what just happened and how I was a part of it.

Not one day goes by where I don't think of the events that day, the people who lost their lives that day and how I was just a very small part of keeping the buildings and people safe that fateful day. Today is September 11th and today we remember all those lives we lost and continue to pray for them and their families even 22 years later.

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