Cheyenne, Wyoming native Jimmy Orr has had a long career in politics. He's worked with Wyoming Governor Jim Geringer and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. From 2001 through 2005 Orr was a White House spokesman and Digital Strategy Director for President George W. Bush. You may also know him as the former first gentleman of Cheyenne, from 2016-2020, while his wife at the time was mayor.

When Orr worked at the White House in Washington DC, he had a front-row seat for the worst terrorist attack in American history, September 11, 2001. Orr recounted that dark day last year.

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"Rushing back to my boss's office to let him know, the sirens went off. Moments later, the Secret Service began banging on every office door and yelling for us to evacuate," Orr recalled.

Orr's job that day was to get the White House website back online and get information out as it became available. He lived close to the Pentagon and returned home that night to a smoke-filled apartment. The former White House spokesman also witnessed the tragic aftermath of the event.

"It was impossible not to cry when family members of those lost in Flight 93 came to the White House for a memorial service two weeks later," Orr said. "As all the White House staffers lined up to shake their hands and express our condolences, I still remember that little boy in his little suit who jumped up to me to get a hug."

Two decades later, the image is indelibly stamped in Orr's mind.

"These memories have not faded. As painful as they are, it’s important that they don’t."

In 2018, Orr was kind enough to come to the studios of Townsquare Media's 650 AM KGAB to tell us what happened that day. He sat down with Glenn Woods to recount his experience. He gets a little emotional near the end of his story. You'll understand why.

You can hear that conversation below.

MORE: Small Wyoming Town Is Home To A 9/11 Artifact

NEVER FORGET: Images from 9/11 and the days after