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What 9/11 looked like from the only American veteran not on Earth

By Connecting Vets Staff

On September 11th, retired US Navy Capt. Frank Culbertson was the only American not on Earth. As a NASA astronaut and commander of the International Space Station, Culbertson alongside his Russian and Italian counterparts had a unique view of that tragic day.

“I glanced at the World Map on the computer to see where over the world we were and noticed that we were coming southeast out of Canada and would be passing over New England in a few minutes. I zipped around the station until I found a window that would give me a view of NYC and grabbed the nearest camera,” Culbertson wrote days after the attack.

“I was flabbergasted, then horrified … It just didn’t seem possible on this scale in our country. I couldn’t even imagine the particulars, even before the news of further destruction began coming in.”

1200px manhattan on september 12   landsat7 840x630 1 What 9/11 looked like from the only American veteran not on Earth

NASA Goddard Office of Public Affairs

“Other than the emotional impact of our country being attacked and thousands of our citizens and maybe some friends being killed, the most overwhelming feeling being where I am is one of isolation.”

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