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9/11/06: Zahn’s Awful First Day At CNN

Paula Zahn was newly hired to take over CNN’s morning show but wasn’t supposed to go on the air until May 2002.” But on Sept. 11, 2001, “she called her boss in Atlanta and volunteered. She was told to go to CNN’s New York offices; she didn’t know where they were,” The Hollywood Reporter notes. When she arrived, she started anchoring with Aaron Brown.

In a reporter’s notebook on tonight’s Paula Zahn Now, she reflects on her terrible first day of work:

zahnsept11.jpg“It was my first day on the job at CNN. We were on the roof of the CNN bureau in New York — just a few miles from where the World Trade Center once stood. I could see the smoke and smell the burning rubble…

There was nothing in my 23 years of reporting that could have prepared me for the enormity of what had happened. The country, the nation’s capital, and my hometown were completely paralyzed with shock and fear.”

Zahn will anchor from Ground Zero tonight…

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