I was promoted to SGT in the US Army on 9-10-01. The next day started like any other, with the exception of some extra excitement on my part. I came in to work at 0530 in the Ft. Meade Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) Ops Center (OC)and began my first day as someone with authority in the military. at about 9:00 am, we got a teletype message from Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) Continental US (CONUS). They told us of a "accident" where a plane flew into one of the twin towers. So, we killed the Nugent CD we had playing and turned on the radio and soon learned that we had been attacked. So, I said Lock and load, heighten your awareness, and let's get some random perimeter security checks going on. Where's the 1st SGT and CO. The CO's in his office, and Top went to the pentagon to meet with the SGT Major of the Army about his upcoming retirement. I told the CO what we knew and my plan to deal with it. He said I was doing a good job and to keep it up. Just then, we heard about the attack on the Pentagon and feared the worst about our units top NCO. We had to keep it together though. Around lunch time, the 1st SGT came onto the Ops floor and I happily called At ease and nearly lost it. He got stuck in traffic and turned back when he heard about the plane hitting the pentagon. He had me brief him up on our situation and ordered me to start rotating my guys through the chow hall. The rest of the day we continued our security checks and we went home at 1730 after our relief arrived. That was my trial by fire, I went from 22 years old to 30+ in a day.