While airport workers and passengers tried to figure out what they were supposed to do next, they all said prayers for the victims of this horrific attack. Stunned and confused passengers wandered around the Gulfport airport, unsure what they should do next.
Because they left for the airport just before the first plane slammed into the World Trade Center, one passenger said, "We didn't know anything about it until we got here and they said our flight was cancelled, and the whole U.S. flights were cancelled."
As soon as the FAA grounded planes, both airport and Air National Guard leaders gathered at the Gulfport terminal for a security briefing.
"We're ramping up to our highest level of security, and we're basically enforcing our security plans that have been in place," Airport Assistant Director Ken Spirito said.
Since passengers couldn't stay at the airport, people on gambling junkets returned to coast casinos. "But," one passenger said, "we have no idea from there if they're going to give us a room." Casinos did work out deals with the stranded passengers.
But that didn't ease the fear many people felt. While they sat in the airport, they saw the destructive video, and couldn't believe what terrorists did to this country.
"I'm worried for my children," a Florida woman said. "That's all I'm concerned about. And all the people, the families that have lost their families right now."
A Wisconsin woman was almost speechless. "I'm in shock," she said, "for the folks in New York and in Washington. I'm shocked." The FAA is saying that the earliest flights will resume is noon Wednesday. But that's not a certainty.
The planes that were involved in today's crashes, are American Airlines and United Airlines.