Three Iconic Figures From 9/11 and Where They Are Today


September 11, 2001 is a date that Americans will remember forever. Just like the question, "Where were you when JFK was assassinated," people can easily answer the question of where they were when the planes hit the twin towers. The events of that day are embedded in our memories, as are the faces and stories of some of the people who appeared on our television screens numerous times over the month or so following the attacks. If you're like most people, you may be wondering what happened to those people and where they are today. Here are just three of the iconic figures who graced out screens and what they're doing today.


Todd Beamer, who was a marketing representative for Oracle Corporation at the time of the 9/11 attacks, was a passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. At the time of the attacks, his wife Lisa was five months pregnant. She would give birth to a daughter, Morgan Kay, on January 9, 2002. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, Lisa Beamer had a high profile, with more than 200 media appearances in six months. Shortly after, she set up the Todd M. Beamer Memorial Foundation —which helps children who have suffered trauma — and co-authored the book "Let’s Roll!: Ordinary, Extraordinary Courage." Lisa Beamer is raising her three children and has never remarried.


The life of Alice Hoagland, who is a retired United Airlines flight attendant, changed dramatically on September 11, 2001, when she received a phone call from her son, Mark Bingham, who was calling to tell her the plane he was on had been hijacked. Mark was a public relations executive who founded his own company, the Bingham Group, and was a passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 93. Along with Todd Beamer and Tom Burnett, he confronted the hijackers and wrestled the controls of the plane from them. The plane crashed in the process, sparing the U.S. Capitol Building and the White House. At the time of the attacks, the telephone conversation Bingham had with his mother thrust her into the media spotlight. Today, Hoagland is a respected authority on airline safety.


On September 11, 2001, Tom Burnett was CEO of medical devices company Thoratec Corporation. He was returning home from a business trip, when he found himself aboard United Airlines Flight 93. As he became aware of what was happening on the plane, he immediately called his wife Deena to find out what was going on in the media. While she encouraged him to sit quietly and not draw attention to himself, Tom was already planning with two other passengers, Mark Bingham and Tom Burnett, to rush the hijackers. While they were successful in overpowering the hijackers, the plane crashed, killing all 44 people on board. Since that time, Deena has authored the book "Fighting Back: Living Life Beyond Ourselves." In June of 2006, Deena remarried after meeting photojournalist Rodney Bailey through friends and they are continuing to raise her three daughters.