WDAY.com

WDAZ: Your Home Team

Published August 25, 2011, 08:58 PM

Local Pilots Who Flew Over Pentagon On 9/11 Recount Their Mission

FARGO (WDAZ-TV) - Two weeks from Sunday, this country will mark the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York City and the Pentagon.

FARGO (WDAZ-TV) - Two weeks from Sunday, this country will mark the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks on New York City and the Pentagon.

Pilots from the 119th Fighter Wing of the North Dakota Air National Guard who were the first to be scrambled to protect the capitol from further attacks shared their memories of the events Thursday.

Former F-16 pilots Col. Rick Gibney, Col. Brad Derrig and Lt. Col. Dean Eckmann all say their memories of that day remain vivid and that they knew, early on, that things for them, and the country, would never be the same again.

"It was almost surreal. The radio calls you would hear, 'certain airspace is shutdown, intruders will be shot down,'" Col. Brad Derrig said.

"What I reported back was, 'it looked like there was a detonation, that definitely penetrated the frist two rings, and the third ring was on fire,'" Lt. Col. Dean Eckmann said.

Be sure and watch WDAZ at 10 on Sunday, September 11, when we'll hear more from the North Dakota-based pilots, and others who remember that day.

Tags: