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The 20th anniversary of 9/11 brings back vivid memories of that dark day for one survivor.It’s been 20 years, but for Kansas Citian Dan Mattox, it still feels like yesterday.”We felt the heat, felt the explosion. We just didn’t know at the time what it was,” he said.Mattox barely escaped the World Trade Center that day.”Just as that happened, the building shook, and there was a loud noise, and I remember asking, I said, ‘Could that be something on the roof?'” Mattox said.As a plane hit Tower 1 of the World Trade Center, Mattox was in a meeting on the 52nd floor of Tower 2, and he was with a man who happened to survive the 1993 attack on the twin towers.”I looked out, and then he jumped up and just as he was doing that, we saw paper, kind of going like this, and he saw something else, I didn’t see, but he yelled at all of us. ‘Let’s get out,'” Mattox said.Instead of heading for the elevator, he and two colleagues headed for the stairs. But by the time, they got down to the 20th floor, there was an announcement.”They started announcing for us all to go back to our offices. Everybody, stop. Turn around and go back to your offices. And Tom and I looked at each other and said, ‘To hell with that,’ and we kept going down,” Mattox said.After 15 minutes in that crowded, but orderly stairwell, they made it outside just as the second plane hit.”I glanced over my shoulder now, and looking up at building one, and I could see something way up had something that happened. I mean, the building was smoking and on fire and we continue to go and just about halfway across that courtyard, just the biggest explosion and we felt heat and light above us, and I thought the building, I just looked at with a fire and it was falling down on us. I mean, I didn’t know what,” Mattox said.That’s when they started running north for blocks away from the towers and eventually back to his hotel.”I’m guessing you’re going on about a half an hour knowing something has happened, but you don’t quite know exactly what,” KMBC’s Kris Ketz said.”No, and you’re exactly right. Now we’re piecing it together up there. Now we know that a plane for sure hit the building. We just got out of and the explosion then we assumed there must have been another plane hit the building one,” Mattox said.In the hours that followed, his wife in Kansas City wasn’t sure if her husband was dead or alive until Mattox finally found a phone and called home to say he was OK.She shared her husband’s story with KMBC that night 20 years ago. It would be days before they saw each other again.”And for days, I would have these rushes of just thankfulness. It was just, you know, it was pretty emotional get back to life and of course. You know. I mean, it doesn’t really leave you. Well, it doesn’t leave you it doesn’t leave everybody was affected by that day,” Mattox said.He said his first trip back to New York wasn’t easy. Eight weeks after the attack he a received call from a New York police officer, saying they found his Sam’s Club card and a few other things from his briefcase. But there will always be the moment when he decided to keep walking down that stairwell instead of turning around as others did that day.”But the guilt and stuff you have over seeing those people go back and, you know, yeah you feel fortunate on one hand you didn’t go back and you feel guilty on another that you got out and others didn’t and some, you know, made other decisions. And I’d say for a long time that was one of the most troubling aspects of it is just thinking about those folks that didn’t or couldn’t make the decision to get out, get out and, and luckily most people decided to get out obviously so,” Mattox said.”So what’s 20 years later going to feel like? What’s that day going to feel like?” Ketz asked Mattox.”You know, I don’t know. I remember every year. I get lots of phone calls and, nowadays, text messages, just people just saying, ‘Thinking about you on this day. Glad you’re here,'” Mattox said.

The 20th anniversary of 9/11 brings back vivid memories of that dark day for one survivor.

It’s been 20 years, but for Kansas Citian Dan Mattox, it still feels like yesterday.

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“We felt the heat, felt the explosion. We just didn’t know at the time what it was,” he said.

Mattox barely escaped the World Trade Center that day.

“Just as that happened, the building shook, and there was a loud noise, and I remember asking, I said, ‘Could that be something on the roof?'” Mattox said.

As a plane hit Tower 1 of the World Trade Center, Mattox was in a meeting on the 52nd floor of Tower 2, and he was with a man who happened to survive the 1993 attack on the twin towers.

“I looked out, and then he jumped up and just as he was doing that, we saw paper, kind of going like this, and he saw something else, I didn’t see, but he yelled at all of us. ‘Let’s get out,'” Mattox said.

Instead of heading for the elevator, he and two colleagues headed for the stairs. But by the time, they got down to the 20th floor, there was an announcement.

“They started announcing for us all to go back to our offices. Everybody, stop. Turn around and go back to your offices. And Tom and I looked at each other and said, ‘To hell with that,’ and we kept going down,” Mattox said.

After 15 minutes in that crowded, but orderly stairwell, they made it outside just as the second plane hit.

“I glanced over my shoulder now, and looking up at building one, and I could see something way up had something that happened. I mean, the building was smoking and on fire and we continue to go and just about halfway across that courtyard, just the biggest explosion and we felt heat and light above us, and I thought the building, I just looked at with a fire and it was falling down on us. I mean, I didn’t know what,” Mattox said.

That’s when they started running north for blocks away from the towers and eventually back to his hotel.

“I’m guessing you’re going on about a half an hour knowing something has happened, but you don’t quite know exactly what,” KMBC’s Kris Ketz said.

“No, and you’re exactly right. Now we’re piecing it together up there. Now we know that a plane for sure hit the building. We just got out of and the explosion then we assumed there must have been another plane hit the building one,” Mattox said.

In the hours that followed, his wife in Kansas City wasn’t sure if her husband was dead or alive until Mattox finally found a phone and called home to say he was OK.

She shared her husband’s story with KMBC that night 20 years ago. It would be days before they saw each other again.

“And for days, I would have these rushes of just thankfulness. It was just, you know, it was pretty emotional get back to life and of course. You know. I mean, it doesn’t really leave you. Well, it doesn’t leave you it doesn’t leave everybody was affected by that day,” Mattox said.

He said his first trip back to New York wasn’t easy. Eight weeks after the attack he a received call from a New York police officer, saying they found his Sam’s Club card and a few other things from his briefcase.

But there will always be the moment when he decided to keep walking down that stairwell instead of turning around as others did that day.

“But the guilt and stuff you have over seeing those people go back and, you know, yeah you feel fortunate on one hand you didn’t go back and you feel guilty on another that you got out and others didn’t and some, you know, made other decisions. And I’d say for a long time that was one of the most troubling aspects of it is just thinking about those folks that didn’t or couldn’t make the decision to get out, get out and, and luckily most people decided to get out obviously so,” Mattox said.

“So what’s 20 years later going to feel like? What’s that day going to feel like?” Ketz asked Mattox.

“You know, I don’t know. I remember every year. I get lots of phone calls and, nowadays, text messages, just people just saying, ‘Thinking about you on this day. Glad you’re here,'” Mattox said.

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