Photos Show The Chaos, Heartbreak Of 9/11 Attacks

·4 min read
The second tower of the World Trade Center explodes into flames after being hit by an airplane in New York on Sept. 11, 2001. (Photo: Sara K. Schwittek via Reuters)
The second tower of the World Trade Center explodes into flames after being hit by an airplane in New York on Sept. 11, 2001. (Photo: Sara K. Schwittek via Reuters)

On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, two hijacked commercial planes crashed into the World Trade Center towers in New York City. Thousands of people died, and the attack helped catapult the United States into its longest war. Twenty years later, the country is still reflecting on the chaos and heartbreak of that day.

See photos of the day’s tragic events below. Some images may be disturbing.

Above: The second tower of the World Trade Center explodes into flames after being hit by an airplane in New York on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Sean Adair via REUTERS)
(Photo: Sean Adair via REUTERS)

Hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 flies toward the World Trade Center twin towers shortly before slamming into the south tower (left) as the north tower burns following an earlier attack by a hijacked airliner in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Sean Adair/Reuters)
(Photo: Sean Adair/Reuters)

The World Trade Center south tower (left) bursts into flames after being struck by hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 as the north tower burns on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)
(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)

People run away as the north tower of the World Trade Center collapses after a hijacked airliner hit the building on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City.

(Photo: David Surowiecki via Getty Images)
(Photo: David Surowiecki via Getty Images)

The top stories of the World Trade Center collapse after being hit by two planes during the Sept. 11 attacks in New York City.

(Photo: Amy Sancetta/AP)
(Photo: Amy Sancetta/AP)

The north tower of New York’s World Trade Center shows the impact left by a hijacked Boeing 767, American Airlines Flight 11, on Sept. 11, 2001. A person is just visible, standing at the bottom of the gaping hole.

(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)
(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)

A person falls to his death from the World Trade Center after two planes hit the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City.

(Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty Images)
(Photo: Spencer Platt via Getty Images)

Hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center and explodes at 9:03 a.m. EST on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City.

(Photo: SETH MCALLISTER/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: SETH MCALLISTER/AFP via Getty Images)

A hijacked commercial plane crashes into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York.

(Photo: Marty Lederhandler/AP)
(Photo: Marty Lederhandler/AP)

The twin towers of the World Trade Center burn behind the Empire State Building in New York on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Richard Drew/AP)
(Photo: Richard Drew/AP)

The south tower of New York’s World Trade Center collapses on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)

Pedestrians run from the scene as one of the World Trade Center towers collapses on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York.

(Photo: Graham Morrison/AP)
(Photo: Graham Morrison/AP)

A lone firefighter moves through piles of debris at the site of the World Trade Center in New York on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Shannon Stapleton via REUTERS)
(Photo: Shannon Stapleton via REUTERS)

Rescue workers carry the fatally injured Rev. Mychal Judge, who served as the New York City Fire Department chaplain, from one of the World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Anthony Correia via REUTERS)
(Photo: Anthony Correia via REUTERS)

A New York City firefighter carries a water hose on Vessey and Greenwich streets in lower Manhattan after the World Trade Center towers collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Lorenzo Ciniglio/Sygma/Sygma via Getty Images)
(Photo: Lorenzo Ciniglio/Sygma/Sygma via Getty Images)

A cloud of smoke engulfs the sky and people run for their lives as one of the twin towers collapses on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)
(Photo: Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty Images)

A survivor sits outside the World Trade Center after two planes hit the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City.

(Photo: Robert Giroux via Getty Images)
(Photo: Robert Giroux via Getty Images)

Smoke emits from the twin towers of the World Trade Center after they were hit by two hijacked airliners in an attack on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City.

(Photo: Mario Tama via Getty Images)
(Photo: Mario Tama via Getty Images)

People in the street watch a building burn in the area where the World Trade Center collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)

An ambulance covered in debris is on fire after the collapse of the first World Trade Center tower on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York.

(Photo: Anthony Correia via REUTERS)
(Photo: Anthony Correia via REUTERS)

New York City firefighters and other emergency personnel survey the World Trade Center area near Vessey and Greenwich streets after the towers collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)

A man with a fire extinguisher walks through rubble after the collapse of the first World Trade Center tower on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York. The man was shouting as he walked around, looking for survivors who needed assistance.

(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)

Rescue workers survey damage to the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York.

(Photo: Gulnara Samoilova/AP)
(Photo: Gulnara Samoilova/AP)

Deputy U.S. Marshal Dominic Guadagnoli helps a woman after she was injured in the attack on the World Trade Center in New York on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)
(Photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)

An American flag at ground zero on the evening of Sept. 11, 2001, after the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City.

(Photo: Alex Wong via Getty Images)
(Photo: Alex Wong via Getty Images)

Smoke comes out from the Southwest E-Ring of the Pentagon building on Sept. 11, 2001, in Arlington, Virginia, after a hijacked plane crashed into the building and set off a huge explosion.

(Photo: U.S. Air Force Photo by TSgt Jim Varhegyi via Getty Images)
(Photo: U.S. Air Force Photo by TSgt Jim Varhegyi via Getty Images)

Firefighters struggle to contain a spreading fire after a highjacked commercial plane crashed into the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, in Arlington, Virginia.

(Photo: U.S. Navy Photo by Journalist 1st Class Mark D. Faram ME via REUTERS)
(Photo: U.S. Navy Photo by Journalist 1st Class Mark D. Faram ME via REUTERS)

Medical personnel and volunteers help injured people outside the Pentagon after a hijacked commercial airliner crashed into the southwest corner of the building on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: MARK D. FARAM/NAVY VISUAL NEWS SERVICE/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: MARK D. FARAM/NAVY VISUAL NEWS SERVICE/AFP via Getty Images)

Military personnel walk down Highway I-395 on Sept. 11, 2001, after evacuating the Pentagon.

(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)

A mound of dirt and charred trees mark the site of a crater created by the impact of United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed on Sept. 11, 2001.

(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)

Officials examine a crater on Sept. 11, 2001, at the crash site of United Airlines Flight 93 near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo: DAVID MAXWELL/AFP via Getty Images)

Officials oversee the scene at the crash site of United Airlines Flight 93 in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, on Sept. 11, 2001.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting