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25 Most Powerful Photos

Like a scene from an uneasy dream, Doug Kanter's picture of a man standing amid the seemingly endless World Trade Center rubble, calling out for survivors, brings to mind the sense so many of us shared on 9/11 and in the days and weeks after: What, in the face of such annihilation, can one person do? "I was on autopilot after the first tower fell," Kanter told LIFE.com. After briefly taking shelter, he stepped outside into streets that "were pretty much deserted, and that's when the person in the picture emerged. He looked like he might be a maintenance worker, had a fire extinguisher in his hand, and was calling out to see if anyone could hear him, saying they should make noise, and people would come and help." Not long after Kanter took this photo, a police office hustled him away from the spot. Minutes later, the second tower collapsed.

(Photo: DOUG KANTER/AFP/Getty Images)

For the full photo collection, go to LIFE.com

9/11: The 25 Most Powerful Photos

Yahoo Canada News

Thirteen years after 9/11, an unsettling number of images from Ground Zero and its environs remain seared in our collective memory -- unsurprising, perhaps, given the scope and scale of the destruction. But the fact that the deadliest, most visually arresting attacks occurred in New York City also meant that many of the world's best photographers were, in effect, already on the scene when the terrorists struck. In hopes of lending coherence to our shared, turbulent recollections, LIFE.com presents the 25 most stirring, visceral photographs from that day, featuring pictures from the likes of James Nachtwey, Joe Raedle, Spencer Platt, Mario Tama, and other celebrated photojournalists (and one intrepid amateur). These are the pictures we remember: wrenching, indelible photographs that tell the tale of a still-resonant late summer day that changed everything.