How well I remember this day in 2001, as I was working as a reporter for the daily Progress Index newspaper in Petersburg, Va.

I was excited because an article I wrote (with awesome photos) about an elderly Black couple who still took neighborhood strolls hand in hand, every day since they’d been married 60-plus years ago.

The article told of their unwavering love for each other.

Dorothy Rowley
Dorothy Rowley

Anyway, in the newsroom, we had just finished the whole paper, having lastly laid out the front page that included a tease on the couple’s article, when we got dispatches about 9/11.

The newsroom went completely silent — until we heard the editor yell out that we had to tear up the front page and replace it with 9/11 coverage.

I ended up working all over the city of Petersburg to get people’s responses and their photos relative to the tragedy.

We worked hard that day — very hard, all day into the late evening preparing 9/11 copy for the next day, which took up several pages.

I was exhausted when I got home that night. My story about the couple never ran.

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