13 / 16

RTRMK3D

Rescue workers remove a man from the World Trade Center tower in New York City early September 11, 2001. Both towers were hit by planes crashing into the building. People streamed out of their offices and onto the streets of midtown Manhattan at midmorning on Tuesday as businesses shut down and buildings were closed after an aircraft attack destroyed the World Trade Center. (REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton JC/ME)

Confronting Terror: Faces of 9/11

Among the most eloquent and unsettling of the countless photographs from September 11, 2011, are those focusing not on the fall of the towers, or the jagged, smoking hole in the Pentagon, but on faces. Human faces etched with shock, fear, and disbelief at the cataclysm unfolding above them, or staring glassy-eyed into some unseen distance, stunned by the enormity of the barbarous terror unleashed that cloudless, late-summer morning. Here, LIFE.com presents a gallery focusing on witnesses to terror as they confront the unspeakable.